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Rape victim urges others to report sex assaults to police


A woman who was raped on her way home from a night out has urged other victims to report sexual violence to the authorities.

Nicole (not her real name), from Peckham, has spoken out about her traumatic experience after her rapist was jailed earlier this year.

Taxi-driver Kaysar Ahmed, 41, of Dolphin Lane, Tower Hamlets, preyed on Nicole, who is in her early 20s, as she made her way home after a night out in Greenwich.

He was found guilty of rape in November 2020 and was sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment in March earlier this year.

Nicole said: “I can’t describe the relief that the sentencing has brought me because it has given me some form of closure.

“Not because it undoes what happened but because it means the wait is over.

“Until the sentencing, you live your life with the court looming over you like a massive black cloud that no one else can really see or understand.”

Rape victim urges others to report sex assaults to police
Kaysar Ahmed

In the early hours of October 26, 2019, Nicole booked a ride home via an app and got in a car in Boord Street, believing it to be her pre-booked cab.

The driver of the vehicle, Ahmed, was a registered private-hire taxi driver but not the one Nicole had booked.

He spoke to Nicole’s friend and assured her he could take her safely to Peckham.

After arriving home, Nicole attempted to gain access to the property but couldn’t find her keys.

Ahmed offered to let her wait in his vehicle, which she initially declined until he persisted and she gave in.

Ahmed then raped her in the back of his car.

Almost two years on from the incident, Nicole hopes to encourage wider victim-reporting of rape and sexual assault.

She said: “If something like this has happened to you then it is not an easy road to recovery but I promise you it is not impossible and you will get there.

“Please speak about it. Even if the police are not your first point of call, tell anyone that you trust because I promise you that even at the time when you might not realise it, it does take some of the weight off your shoulders.

“When you experience something like this, it is very easy to feel helpless and lacking control because the power has been taken from you.

“Reporting the incident to the police may feel like such a big and scary situation, but my case proves that it really does have the potential to make such a big difference.”

This month, the Met announced a re-launch of the ‘Ask for Angela’ scheme – a safety initiative which is being rolled out in pubs and clubs across London.

People who feel unsafe, vulnerable or threatened can discreetly seek help by approaching venue staff and asking for ‘Angela’.

This code will alert bar staff and a trained member of the team will then help by reuniting the person in trouble with a friend, seeing them to a taxi, or by calling venue security and/or the police.

Visit www.safersounds.org.uk/wave to find out more.

Pictured top: Boord Street in Greenwich where the woman was picked up (Picture: Google Street View)

 

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