"He touched her and tried to kiss her. She said, 'No, stop'."
Tawab Khan, aged 48, from Hanley in Staffordshire, was jailed for seven years at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court on Friday, February 22, 2019, for sexually abusing a woman in his taxi.
Khan, who is a father of nine children, agreed to take the woman home for £10 following a night out with her friends in Hanley at around 2:45 am.
She initially sat in the back but he asked her to sit in the front of the taxi. Khan then kissed her, touched her and groped her breasts.
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded with him to let her out. The ordeal finally ended when he stopped near Park Hall.
Prosecutor Tom Kenning said:
“She left on her own and looked for a taxi. The first taxi driver she tried said he would charge £15 to take her home but the second taxi, driven by the defendant, agreed to take her for £10.
“She got in the back and he said, ‘You seem like a nice girl’. She said she had left early on her own because she had work in the morning.
“He said, ‘Why don’t you get in the front’? and she did. She thought he was being pleasant. If she had not had a drink she may have been alerted to what he was intending to do.
“He touched her and tried to kiss her. She said, ‘No, stop’. He continued driving.
“He said, ‘You are a nice girl, you are a beautiful girl’. She became concerned. He grabbed her breasts.”
“It became clear he was not going the most direct route to her home.
“He put his hand on her leg and sexually assaulted her. She repeatedly asked to be let out. He eventually did. She was upset and called the police.”
Khan was arrested later that morning. He told officers that the woman had groped him.
Paul Cliff, mitigating, said Khan is a committed community member and is involved with the North Staffordshire volleyball team.
The married Khan had been targeted by warlords in his homeland because he was a successful businessman. As a result, he left and came to the UK.
Mr Cliff explained that six of Khan’s children are still financially dependent on him.
He said: “He is well known in the religious community of North Staffordshire.”
In a victim statement, the woman said she has suffered from panic attacks and flashbacks since her ordeal and now barely goes out.
Khan was found guilty of assault by penetration and two charges of sexual assault.
Following his arrest, his taxi licence was suspended and has since worked as a fast-food delivery driver.
Judge David Fletcher said: “The one thing anyone should expect when getting into a taxi is that they are safe.
“On this occasion, this young woman was treated by you in a way that means she was simply not safe. She has been seriously affected psychologically.”
Mr Cliff added: “There is no chance of him being able to work as a taxi driver again.”
In addition to the jail sentence, Khan will be on the Sex Offenders’ Register for the rest of his life.