A builder who sexually assaulted two female hotel workers at knifepoint has been jailed for at least 16-and-a-half years.

David Murray had been staying at a hotel in South Hertfordshire with work colleagues when he took a knife from the hotel kitchen and held the women hostage in an office during the early hours of Sunday, September 17.

The 35-year-old, of Falmouth Road, Leicester, told one of the women to open the safe but she did not have the keys.

Murray then made the women remove their clothes before sexually assaulting them both and also raping one of them.

He only left when one of the terrified workers said that the hotel manager would be arriving soon.

Murray pleaded guilty at St Albans Crown Court on October 20, 2017, to aggravated burglary, two counts of rape, two counts of false imprisonment, causing a person to engage in sexual activity, attempted rape and sexual assault.

He appeared for sentencing at the same court on Thursday, February 8 where the judge ordered that he must serve 16-and-a-half years in prison with an extended licence of eight years.

This means he could go back to prison to prison on his release at any time during the next 24-and-a-half years.

He must also register as a sex offender for life.

PC Katie Hull, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Sexual Offences Investigation Team, said: “The significant sentence given to Murray reflects the horrendous crimes he carried out at the hotel on September 17.

“The victims in this case have been incredibly brave throughout the criminal process and, today, they continue to live with the trauma caused by Murray’s actions.

“I hope that this substantial sentence will help them as they continue come to terms with what happened to them on that dreadful day.”

Any resident in Hertfordshire who has experienced sexual abuse or sexual assault can contact Herts SARC for practical and emotional support on the 24/7 helpline: 0808 178 4448

Alternatively, people or email Herts.SARC@nhs.net or visit www.hertssarc.org.