Man jailed for raping woman who mistook his car for pre-booked mini-cab

A SECURITY guard has been jailed for raping a woman who mistook his car for her pre-booked mini-cab in London.

Sola Austin Warikwah, 39, was jailed for seven years, uplifted with an additional three years to be served on licence, for rape.

During the trial, the court heard how in the early hours of April 22, 2019, the 25-year-old female victim got into Warikwah’s car at Embankment, believing him to be the mini-cab that had been booked to take her home.

Warikwah made the decision to drive the woman to a multi-storey car park in Victoria, where he raped her.

At the time of the incident, Warikwah was employed as a security guard. His duties included patrolling areas in central London during the night – the car park where the offence took place was one of the patrol sites on his route.

During her ordeal, the woman managed to send messages to a friend. She wrote, “I’ve been raped. I feel sick. This taxi won’t take me home. I’m scared.”

When she eventually managed to escape the vehicle, the woman had the courage to take pictures of her attacker as he left the scene.

Detectives from Westminster launched an immediate investigation, conducting extensive CCTV, phone and vehicle enquiries that ultimately identified Warikwah. Once identified, he was located and was arrested at his home address two days later.

He has also been issued with a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO), and was placed on the sex offenders register for life the Metropolitan Police revealed.

Warikwah had previously been found guilty of the offence by a unanimous jury verdict following a week-long trial in September.

Detective Sergeant John Paton, of Westminster Sapphire Team in the Safeguarding Unit, said: “Sola Austin Warikwah is a predatory sex offender who targeted a vulnerable, unsuspecting woman travelling alone.

“Due to the courage and quick thinking of the victim, assistance from the public and the veracity of the investigation, a dangerous offender has been placed where he is no longer a threat to women.

“I sincerely hope that the sentence handed down today encourages other victims of sexual offences to come forward.”

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Jennifer Leighfield

Jennifer Leighfield, born in Salisbury, UK; resident in Malaga, Spain since 1989. Degree in Translation and Interpreting in Spanish, French and English from Malaga University (2005), specialising in Crime, Forensic Medicine and Genetics. Published translations include three books by Richard Handscombe. Worked with Euro Weekly News since November 2006. Well-travelled throughout Spain and the rest of the world, fan of Harry Potter and most things ‘geek’.