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LONDON: A man who murdered a woman in an unprovoked attack in London in 2020 has been sentenced to life in prison.

James Sinclair, 31, who attacked another woman in a similar incident a day later, refused to attend his trial or give an explanation for the attack.

He was convicted of murder and attempted murder, and will spend at least 41 years behind bars.

Sinclair stabbed 40-year-old Shadika Patel, a mother of two, while she waited for a bus to take a food parcel to her two sons before the UK went into its first COVID-19 lockdown on March 19, 2020.

Her screams alerted a member of the public, but she was pronounced dead later that day at Newham General Hospital.

Sinclair then attacked his second victim, an unnamed 48-year-old woman, in Islington in North London. She was stabbed in the face and body but survived. Sinclair was arrested a week later.

Detective Inspector John Marriott said: “It is incomprehensible why he chose to attack two lone women at night. Incidents such as this are rare and my team of detectives worked at pace to identify Sinclair before he could attack anyone else.

“Women should not have to change their behaviour and should be able to go about their business, feeling safe, any time of day or night.”