Illegal cab driver guilty of raping gay men in London
A man who posed as a taxi driver was yesterday found guilty of raping two young gay men after picking them up from a London nightclub.
Woolwich crown court heard that Mohamad Caid, 38, of Deptford, had been touting for passengers on two occasions in May this year close to Heaven nightclub, near Charing Cross station.
In the first incident, a 19-year-old man was driven to Lewisham before being sexually assaulted.
Five days later, Caid picked up two men and drove them to Fenchurch Street station. After dropping them off, he persuaded one of the men, who was 18, to get back in the car and subsequently raped him.
He was convicted of rape, attempted rape, sexual assault and two counts of false imprisonment.
He has been remanded in custody and will be sentenced on January 11th. The judge warned he could expect a substantial custodial sentence.
Following the verdict, police sought to reassure gay men that reports of sexual assaults would be taken seriously and said that messages about unlicensed taxis were relevant to everyone, not just women.
City of London Police’s Detective Inspector Dave Carter, who led the investigation into the rapes, said: “I want to reassure gay men that we treat every report seriously. We have specially trained officers and the support of the Independent Sexual Violence Advisor services, to help and support victims from their initial report, throughout the investigation and during court proceedings. Victims can also ask for the support of a gay officer during the investigation.
“This case unfortunately illustrates that the advice in the national police rape awareness campaign is as relevant to gay men as to other members of our community.”
Police forces nationally are supporting the campaign to raise awareness of rape in the lead-up to the Christmas party season when there is the potential for incidents of rape and sexual assault to increase.