Disclaimer: This story contains references and descriptions of rape
Muhanad Adem, 29, has been sentenced to 12 years of prison after posing as a minicab driver and raping a University of Leeds student.
The Leeds Crown Court heard that after a night out with friends on 13th December 2018, the student got into the back of Adem’s vehicle, mistaking it for a legitimate taxi. After typing the postcode of her address into the man’s phone, he proceeded to drive in a different direction, stopped and raped her in the back of his car. He drove off again, however the student managed to escape through the window and alerted her friends that she had been raped.
Leeds resident Adem denied the charges, but was found guilty of the crime on the 20th December of last year. A jury panel came to a unanimous guilty verdict after just three hours. After the sentencing, Claire MacDonald of the Crown Prosecution Service commented that “this was a brutal and opportunistic attack, late at night on a vulnerable young woman, who has been left devastated. The impact of sexual violence of this kind goes far beyond any physical injury and its effects for the victim are long-lasting and traumatising.
MacDonald went on to applaud the victim, stating that they had “displayed immense courage and dignity during the investigation and prosecution”.
Detective Chief Inspector Sharron Kaye, of West Yorkshire Police Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, adds that “Adem has shown himself to be a sexual predator who targeted the victim as she made her way home from a night out.”
Inspector Kaye explained that “Adem was caught as a result of a thorough and comprehensive investigation by specialist detectives, which should serve to illustrate how seriously we treat offences of this nature with the aim of getting justice for victims and taking dangerous offenders off the streets.”
On behalf of the Crown Prosecution Office MacDonald emphasizes that “our thoughts remain with her, as they have been throughout.”
In terms of University support, should anyone wish to disclose any incident or if this triggers any need for support (from staff or students), there are support and advice services available. The University can also support anyone in reporting any incident to the Police and incidents can also be reported anonymously through their online system.
There is also support from Leeds University Union Student Advice.