LONDON: A woman who was raped by a taxi driver on her way home from a night out with friends has spoken out in a bid to encourage other victims of sexual violence to report incidents to police and seek support from services available.
The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, was raped in 2019 by a private-hire taxi driver who preyed on the vulnerability of a lone woman making her way home from a night out with friends, Met has reported.
Kaysar Ahmed, 41 of Dolphin Lane, E14, was sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment at Inner London Crown Court on Thursday, 11 March 2020.
He was found guilty of rape on 27 November 2020 at the same court.
The court heard that the victim, a woman in her early twenties, had been out with friends in the Greenwich, SE10 area on the evening of the 25 October 2019.
In the early hours of 26 October, she had booked a car home via an app before making her way to a nearby taxi rank in Boord Street, SE10 where she proceeded to enter into a vehicle at around 01:10hrs, believing this to be her pre-booked car.
The driver of the vehicle was Ahmed – a locally registered private-hire taxi driver – although not the driver of her pre-booked car as she thought.
The victim’s friend had a short conversation with the driver to confirm he was going to Peckham, to which Ahmed said yes.
After arriving at an address in Peckham, the victim attempted to gain access to the property but was unable to locate her keys. She knocked repeatedly on the door, unaware if anyone was inside, and received no answer.
Ahmed then exited his car and offered for the lone woman to wait in his vehicle, to which she initially declined. However, after the driver persisted, the woman eventually got into the back of the vehicle. Upon doing so, Ahmed entered the rear of the vehicle with her.
Ahmed then raped the woman in the back of his vehicle.
After the ordeal, the woman managed to exit the vehicle and gain access to the address, where she was able to alert friends who quickly called the police.
Detectives from the Met’s Sapphire Unit immediately launched an investigation. Following enquiries, Ahmed was forensically linked to the crime and interrogation of his mobile cell site data placed him within the vicinity at the relevant times.
On 31 October 2019, Ahmed was arrested on suspicion of rape and subsequently charged as above.
Tackling violence against women and girls remains a priority for the Metropolitan Police Service. Earlier this week, the MPS announced a re-launch of the ‘Ask for Angela’ scheme – a safety initiative which is being rolled out to licensed venues across London.
People who feel unsafe, vulnerable or threatened can discreetly seek help by approaching venue staff and ask them for ‘Angela’. This code-phrase will indicate to staff that they require help with their situation and a trained member of staff will then look to support and assist them. This might be through reuniting them with a friend, seeing them to a taxi, or by calling venue security and/or the police.