A fake “taxi driver” has been jailed for seven years for sexually assaulting a female passenger he picked up in York City centre. The court heard how the victim, a 24-year-old woman, believed her drink had been spiked during a night out with friends in the city centre.
She said she felt “mangy” and “totally out of it” as she left Vudu. The court heard how as she left the premises, 53-year-old Dominic Spiteri, came up to her and said he was a taxi driver. He then offered to take her home on what he called “mates rates”. Trusting his intentions, the woman entered his vehicle, which is when he started molesting her.
Spiteri drove his victim to a lonely layby in the countryside, where he sexually assaulted her. The court heard his attack was so severe that it left the woman in pain for days afterwards. She said she couldn’t stop him because of the state she was in but kept saying “no”. Spiteri, who worked as a doorman on city centre clubs, denied both claims of acting as a taxi driver or spiking the woman's drink. Speaking from the witness box, Spiteri claimed his victim had introduced him to her friends inside Vudu.
He went on to suggest she had flirted with him and initiated sexual contact while in his vehicle. As reported in the York Press, he denied witness statements that the victim had vomited when they reached the hotel where her friends were staying. The jury convicted Spiteri, of Norton, of sexual assault after four hours in retirement. Speaking directly to Spiteri, Judge Simon Batiste said: “The victim was particularly vulnerable due to her personal circumstances. She was alone in a “taxi” with you, late at night where she was obviously clearly incapable due to her intoxicated state. You took advantage of that. “You have not shown one shred of remorse for your behaviour. “This was a horrible attack.” Spiteri, who worked as a bodyguard for big names like Katie Price, One Direction, Lee Evans, Jason Manford, Keith Lemon and Clare Balding was jailed for seven years, made a lifelong sexual harm prevention order forbidding him to have a woman alone with him in a car or contacting the victim in any way and put him on the sex offenders’ register for life.
The victim cried as the jury returned their verdict at the end of a four-day trial. In a personal statement she said she couldn't trust men anymore and felt violated. She said she now doesn't like to be alone with any man. Keith Allen, for Spiteri, said he was now suffering from depression and under the care of a psychiatrist.