An alleged serial rapist accused of killing one of his victims targeted vulnerable women under cover of darkness, a court has been told.
Aman Vyas, 35, is charged with the rape and murder of Michelle Samaraweera in Walthamstow, east London, in May 2009.
Mr Vyas was extradited from India in October 2019 to face charges against four women in total.
He has admitted one count of rape, but denies 10 other charges, Croydon Crown Court heard on Tuesday.
Mr Vyas is charged with murder, as well as six counts of rape against women aged between 35 and 59.
He is also accused of causing grievous bodily harm with intent and of having an article with a blade or point in a public place.
In Spring 2009 Mr Vyas turned the area around his Walthamstow home into a “hunting ground” for a “series of violent rapes”, Tom Little QC, prosecuting, said.
Mr Vyas “would go out prowling in the early hours of the morning, looking for lone women on whom he could prey”, Mr Little said.
“Three of his victims were attacked and raped out in the open, while one was raped after the defendant had followed her back to her flat.”
Mr Vyas had evaded justice for more than a decade as he left the UK weeks after the last attack, the court heard.
Mr Little told the jury that Mr Vyas has admitted one of the rapes but denied the other attacks, even “in the teeth of compelling evidence of his guilt”.
The court heard he had been linked forensically to the attacks and to the victims’ clothing.