A man accused of stalking, choking and then trying to rape a stranger in Colliers Wood claims the attacker could be his twin brother, a court heard.

The terrified victim fled to raise the alarm after being dragged into a park by Khaled Argoub and sexually assaulted, a jury was told.

Argoub, 21, followed a woman he saw on a London Underground night service, choked her until she blacked out and forced her to perform a sexual act on him, it is alleged.

Kingston Crown Court heard that his DNA was found under her fingernails and there were CCTV images of him.

But in a police interview he said that the man in the CCTV could be his twin brother, even though the Algerian national had told his housemate he had no other family in the UK.

The young woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was able to escape by scratching for her survival, biting him and removing her jumpsuit so she could run away.

She was forced to flee naked to a nearby housing estate and seek help from a stranger who called the police and an ambulance.

He is accused of closely following the woman out of the Tube at around 3am in Colliers Wood.

DNA samples of Argoub were recovered from the young woman's fingernails and a baseball cap believed to belong to him was found by police at the park where the alleged attack took place.

Prosecutor Charlotte Newell said: "In the early hours of the 11th August 2019 a young woman was subjected to a terrifying attack.

"Travelling home alone from a night out in Brixton, she was followed by a male who grabbed her in a stranglehold, dragged her to a park and then subjected her to a sexual assault.

"Police were able to ascertain through an extensive trawl of CCTV the movements and appearance of the perpetrator.

"There is no CCTV of the area of the park where it took place.

"Her attacker followed her from the train and out into the street and he was, the Crown says, captured on CCTV doing so.

"When [the woman] was being attacked she initially tried to resist. A part of that resistance involved her clawing at the attacker with her nails.

"Fearing that by resisting she was risking her own life by doing so she stopped fighting back. She was not consenting, she played along for her own safety.

"In doing so, she was able to escape, naked, running to nearby housing to summon help."

Ms Newell added: "Mr Argoub was examined by a doctor at the police station after the arrest who noted scratch marks on his body.

"His DNA was recovered from [the young woman]'s fingernails.

"The Crown suggests that is because, having followed her, he attacked her in the brutal way that she describes."

She said at 3.25am, the young woman was meeting friends in Brixton and accidentally missed her stop. She got off at South Wimbledon crossing to the opposite platform to Colliers Wood.

Around the same time, a male believed to be Argoub was seen on CCTV forcing his way through the barriers and making his way to the platform at South Wimbledon.

Both got on the train and travelled one stop to Colliers Wood, where CCTV showed the male standing very close to her on the escalator.

Ms Newell said: "Byegrove Road is a poorly lit street and in close proximity to the park.

"In the circumstances she took the precaution of walking in the middle of the road.

"She was on her telephone talking to friends WhatsApp and taking photos when she turned and noticed a male about the distance of three car lengths behind her, he too was in the middle of the road.

"He smirked at her then ran towards her, he put her neck in an arm hold from behind and dragged her into a very dark and wooded area of the park.

"He was choking her, she struggled to breathe and thought she was going to die.

"She thinks that she blacked out and regained consciousness in the park. He grappled her to the floor.

"She was wearing a jumpsuit that had come loose in the struggle, he clambered on top of her.

"He was holding his hand over her mouth to prevent her screaming, she struggled and scratched and bit him but it was futile and she was scared he would strangle her again and she would die.

"He grabbed her breast and tried to kiss her, he smelled of cigarettes and aftershave.

"[The young woman] had the presence of mind to consider how it was she could end the ordeal and escape with her life.

"She stopped resisting and realised that she would need to remove her jumpsuit which was by her ankles if she was if she was to be able to run away.

"As she did this, he was distracted.

"[She] took the chance to run naked to a nearby block of flats where she rang on strangers' doorbells."

Police officers and an ambulance arrived soon after to question and treat the woman for her injuries.

Ms Newell said: "She was distressed and hyper-ventilating.

"She told the ambulance crew that she had been dragged, choked and sexually assaulted.

"They noted red marks on either side of her neck, scratches on her back and two bruises on her forehead, a cut to her lip and right foot."

Subsequent analysis at a sexual assault clinic found abrasions on both sides of her neck, haemorrhaging to her eyes consistent with being choked, bruises and abrasions on her arms, back and bottom and several on her genitals.

Ms Newell added: "The nail clippings were taken from [the woman's] right and left hands.

"DNA from the defendant was present in both the right and the left hand clippings."

The prosecutor said his interview with police on 26 August was "unusual", despite being assessed mentally fit for interview.

She said: "He first said that he did not know who he was or what his name was.

"He later claimed to have a twin but did not know when he had last seen him or contacted him.

"This is of course in contradiction to him telling his housemate that he had no family in the UK.

"He said he got around London by following people because he is an animal and that he didn't know Colliers Wood area but his brother might.

"He said that he could not remember where he was on evening on 10 August but probably in bed sleeping.

"He was shown CCTV stills of the male at South Wimbledon and Colliers Wood but denied it was him and maintained that it could be his twin brother."

Argoub denies two counts of attempted rape, three counts of sexual assault, one count of attempting to choke with intent to commit rape, and a count of assault by penetration.

The trial continues.