Police are appealing for information and warning the gay community to be vigilant after a man was raped after a night out with friends in Manchester’s Gay Village.

At about 430am on Monday 6 November 2006 the 27-year-old victim got into a car with a man in Port Street in the city centre after the night out on Canal Street.

Port Street is in a gay cruising area close to the Basement Sauna.

The man took the victim to an unknown location where he locked the victim in the car, threatened him that he had a knife and forced him to take off his clothes.

He then raped him in the car. He then drove the victim to another unknown location where he subjected him to a second serious sexual assault.

The victim finally managed to escape on Lord Sheldon Way, Ashton-under-Lyne, after the offender made demands for money.

The victim was helped by a security guard who gave him a coat and contacted police.

The offender is described as white, 5’8″, about 30 years old with short black hair, a chubby face and muscular arms. He had a deep accent which may have been Mancunian.

He has a tattoo on his right arm with writing on the inside between his wrist and elbow.

At the time of the attack he was wearing a stripy top and brown jeans or cords.

The man’s car was a dark coloured vehicle.

Detective Constable Pete Slater said: “This was a horrific attack on a man who had been having a night out with friends. He is understandably devastated that someone has done this to him and we want to make sure the man responsible is held to account for his actions.

“I know that some people may be reluctant to come forward as this area is known to be one where men meet for sex. We understand those concerns. But we would like to assure you that our priority is to catch this man. We treat all allegations of rape very seriously and any information you may have will be treated in the strictest confidence.

“Please get in touch with us if you know anything about this attack or if you suspect you know who the offender is. You can contact us here at the CID office, or if you feel more comfortable you could get in touch with our team of dedicated officers based in the Gay Village. Alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers in confidence.

“I would also ask members of the gay community to be vigilant around this area as this man may attempt this again.

“I must stress that assaults of this nature are very rare. However, for gay people who use this area, I would urge you to please be aware of your surroundings and take steps to keep yourself safe.”

Anyone with information about this attack can contact DC Slater at Ashton CID on 0161 856 9255. GMP’s Gay Village Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team is based at the Lesbian and Gay Foundation on Princess Street. To contact them call 0161 856 3277. Alternatively the team holds a surgery at the LGF every Thursday at 6pm. Crimestoppers can be contacted in confidence on 0800 555 111.

Anyone who has been the victim of a rape or sexual assault can contact specially trained officers, who are available to provide professional advice and guidance on how an investigation may proceed and the support services that are available.

The officers are trained as part of Project Nightingale, a scheme aimed at raising awareness of the support available to victims and setting out the standard for the investigation of rapes and serious sexual assaults.

Greater Manchester Police work closely with St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre who can be contacted on 0161 276 6515.