'Cold case' rapist jailed


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The Independent Online

An unlicensed cab driver was jailed for five years at the Old Bailey today for raping a passenger nearly 17 years ago.

Mustafa Hassan, 68, attacked a 29-year-old woman in September 1995 after she had been out celebrating her birthday in London's West End.

She and her husband had left a club on Charing Cross Road, and he had "parked" her against a wall while trying to find a cab. When the husband returned, she had vanished.

The victim passed out in the back of Hassan's car and came to in Croydon, south London, with her clothes disturbed.

Passing sentence today Judge Richard Hawkins said: "Her account was that she didn't realise why her husband had left her she was so drunk, and she was crying."

He told Hassan: "You accept that you raped her and you accept that she was in no condition to consent."

Hassan pleaded guilty on the day that his trial was due to start in November last year.

Judge Hawkins added: "The effect on the victim of such a traumatic experience was plainly a very serious matter."

Hassan, from Erith, Kent, admitted rape after a cold case investigation linked his DNA to the case.

A sample was on the police database after he was arrested in 2005 and fined for touting his unlicensed cab.

In mitigation, Steve Bailey, for Hassan, said: "He was aware that she was drunk...but not so drunk that he shouldn't commence sexual activity with her."

However once he realised how inebriated she was, he carried on regardless, Mr Bailey said.