Man jailed 12 years for raping lone woman dropped off in wrong place by London minicab driver

Image credit: Metropolitan Police

A man has been jailed for 12 years after he raped a lone woman in Lewisham who was dropped off in the wrong place by a minicab driver.

Danut Bulboana, 21, was sentenced yesterday at Woolwich Crown Court to a total of 12 years’ imprisonment after being found guilty of two counts of rape and one count of attempting to choke at the same court on 3 August.

The court heard that just before midnight on 27 August 2019 the victim - a woman in her late 20s - was targeted by Bulboana and was raped in a wooded area near Catford Bridge Railway Station.

The victim had been making her way home after a night out with a friend but became lost after she was dropped at the wrong destination by a minicab driver.

The victim recalled suddenly finding herself in an unfamiliar wooded area with an unknown man - later identified as Bulboana.

The attack then took place. She tried to scream but Bulboana stifled her cries by forcing an unknown item or object into her mouth, choking her. The woman eventually managed to get away from Bulboana and call 999.

Within five minutes of receiving the call, a Metropolitan Police response team arrived on scene and spoke to the victim who then assisted the officers in trying to locate where the offence took place. In doing so, they were able to trace Bulboana’s location and, despite altering his appearance by changing his clothing, the woman was able to provide a positive identification and Bulboana was arrested.

Officers from the Met’s South East Safeguarding Team progressed the investigation and were able to charge Bulboana on 25 October 2019 after forensic examinations linked him to the crime.

Detective Constable Dean Young, who led the investigation, said: “This was a brutal and extremely sinister attack in which Bulboana preyed on the vulnerability of a lone woman at night. I would like to commend the sheer bravery displayed by the victim who quickly called police after being subjected to a truly horrific ordeal. Her actions resulted in a dangerous man being detained by officers within an hour of the attack, and subsequently being sentenced for his crimes.

“This case demonstrates our commitment to removing sexual predators from the streets of London and ensuring they are brought to justice. Rape and sexual offences often inflict lasting trauma on victims, but I hope that Bulboana’s conviction will help the victim’s recovery process somewhat.

“If you are a victim of a sexual crime, please tell us - you will be supported by specialist officers who are trained to help and guide victims throughout their recovery process.”