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Rapist pretending to offer taxi services to women victims found guilty

Image credit: Lancashire Police

A man who pretended to offer taxi services and tricked vulnerable women into his car before driving them to secluded locations and raping them, has admitted his crimes.

Nazim Asmal lured the women into his vehicle as they made their way home from nights out by leading them to believe he was a taxi driver. He then drove them to remote locations before subjecting them to serious sexual assaults.

The first incident happened on 3 October 2021. The victim got into Asmal’s car in Preston city centre. He drove for about ten minutes, raped his victim in the car and then dropped her off back in the city centre. She flagged a member of the public down for help.

The second incident happened on 4 March 2023. The victim had been on a night out in Darwen and ended up in Asmal’s car. He drove her to a secluded area on the outskirts of Darwen where he then raped her. Asmal managed to get the victim's phone number and called her at the start of April. She did not answer the call on that occasion because it came up with ‘no caller ID’.

Asmal called her again on 8 April 2023 and this time she did answer. The victim recognised the voice as the man who had raped her but did not know his identity. She ended the call after Asmal asked the terrified victim ‘If she wanted to do something?’

Asmal raped his third victim on the same evening he made that call. The victim got into Asmal’s car in Darwen town centre. Driving her towards Bolton, in the opposite direction of her home, Asmal said: “You don’t want to pay for this taxi, do you?”

He stopped in a secluded area and raped her. He then dropped her off at her home address.

Lancashire Police officers identified Asmal after his black Toyota Yaris was picked up on CCTV cameras.

Asmal, 34, appeared at Preston Crown Court on Friday 17 November 2023 where he pleaded guilty to four counts of rape.

He was remanded into custody to be sentenced at the same court on the 13 February.

DI Darren Irving, from East RASSO Team, said: “Asmal deliberately targeted his victims because of their vulnerable state and subjected them to serious sexual assaults. Although today’s headlines will quite rightly focus on Asmal’s abhorrent defending, my thoughts are very much with the victims who continue to be supported by specially trained officers.

“If you or somebody you know has been the victim of a sexual offence I would encourage you to contact the police knowing you will be listened to, believed and that we will do everything we can to put the perpetrator before the courts.”


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