"I needed help to get home, not to be violated"
Naiem Suleman, aged 52, of no fixed address, was jailed for nine-and-a-half years on February 1, 2021, after he raped a drunk student, infecting her with a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
Warwick Crown Court heard that the Uber delivery driver targeted the 22-year-old woman after she became separated from her friends on a night out on January 19, 2019.
He offered to drive her home and the student accepted.
However, he drove her to a secluded spot in Coventry and raped her. Suleman later dumped her outside her flat.
The victim’s housemates found her in a distressed state and she was wearing Suleman’s work jacket which had the logo of the company he worked for.
She also suffered bruising around her neck as well as scrapes and scratches on her knees.
Suleman denied rape but was convicted in November 2020 after forensic evidence linked him to the crime.
At the sentencing hearing, the student said:
“I needed help to get home, not to be violated by a stranger.
“Before the incident, I would happily go out with my friends and be happy dancing and drinking. I would not be paranoid like I am now.
“When I go out now, I have one alcoholic drink and then water, but I rarely go out.”
Her ordeal affected her studies and she eventually decided to leave university as a result.
She added: “I want to turn this round from one of the worst days of my life into something positive.
“I want to show this man that that night in January 2019 I was helpless and vulnerable. I’m not now.”
Judge Anthony Potter told Suleman: “In the early hours of the morning you were working as an Uber delivery driver and you came across a young woman who was alone and distressed.
“She was clearly drunk and unable to take proper care of herself and was disorientated and could not remember where she lived.
“She was only a short distance from her home, but it must have been clear to you she was disorientated and in need of help.
“But you did not seek to help her or summon the emergency services, your thoughts moved almost immediately to exploitation.
“You got her into your car and you drove her to a secluded spot and you callously raped her.”
“What you did after this distressing incident is far from clear, but what obviously occurred is that by some means she was deposited at the house she shared.
“She found herself on the doorstep unable to remember what had happened, but in such a distressed state that her housemates felt they could not leave her alone.
“I treat you as a man who lured her into your vehicle, probably with a promise to take her home.
“She was particularly vulnerable. She was not just very drunk, she was alone at night.
“She was physically unable to help herself, let alone protect herself from someone like you.
“You passed a sexually transmitted disease on to her, and it has had a significant impact on her, no matter what her efforts are to put this behind her.
“Students are the very lifeblood of the city, and they are entitled to feel safe to go out at night and to get home safely, no matter how much they have had to drink.
“There has been no expression of remorse from you, and you continue to deny the offence in the face of the overwhelming evidence against you.”
Judge Potter told the victim: “You have spoken bravely of seeking to put this behind you, and I very much hope you can.”
A pre-sentence report revealed that Suleman was a “high risk of harm to female adults”.
Suleman was jailed for nine-and-a-half years. He was also made to sign the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.
Detective Constable Becci Jones, from the West Midlands Police Public Protection Unit, said:
“It saddens us that throughout this case Suleman denied raping the woman – meaning she also had to endure a court trial.
“But with the support of our specially trained officers she remained strong and resilient and with her help we have now secured his conviction.
“We hope that this will bring her some comfort and wish her well for the future.”