A married taxi driver took a drunk teenager to McDonald’s before raping her at his home in an early-morning attack, a court has heard.
Cabbie Katar Shahin offered the girl – who cannot be named for legal reasons – a free lift home after she said she had no money.
Instead, he took her to a McDonald’s restaurant – where he bought her a Coke – before driving her to his house in Swansea, Wales.
There, he sexually attacked her, the court was told.
Shahin, 40, denied rape, claiming the vulnerable girl was a prostitute and he had paid her £20 for sex, Wales Online reports.
But he was convicted of rape following a trial at Swansea Crown Court. He has now been locked up for 10 years.
Police have praised the strength and courage of the victim in coming forward – and have branded Shahin a “sexual predator”.
The court heard that the taxi driver picked up the teenager from the street in the early hours of the morning in June last year.
The girl was walking towards the centre of Swansea after leaving the friends she had spent the night with.
She had taken alcohol, cannabis and a sleeping tablet, and was heavily intoxicated, the court was told.
At the same time, Shahin was finishing his shift for the night, and was driving to the McDonald’s restaurant in Cwmdu for something to eat.
The court heard the taxi driver saw the girl and pulled up beside her, asking if she needed a lift.
The teenager said she didn’t have any money – but Shahin said he would take her home for free.
During the trial, the girl said she only got into the vehicle because it was a taxi, and she believed all taxis had CCTV for passengers’ safety.
Shahin drove to the McDonald’s and bought his victim a Coke and himself some food, the court was told.
He then drove to his house in Aberdyberthi Street, Hafod, telling the girl he had to pop in before he could take her home.
The court heard the driver told the passenger he could not leave her alone in his cab, so she agreed to go into the house with him.
In the house he offered her alcohol – which she refused – then began trying to kiss and fondle her, it was said.
The girl resisted his advances but began to feel drowsy, and passed out.
The next thing she remembered was waking up naked with a used condom on the floor, the court was told.
Shahin later drove the teenager into town, leaving her outside a pub.
The court heard the girl went home. The following day, she contacted police saying she thought she had been raped but was not sure.
The victim was able to recall the house number where the attack happened but did not know the street name, it was said.
However, she was able to describe the area and that, combined with officers’ local knowledge, led them to the correct address.
When officers searched Shahin’s house, they found a used condom containing both the defendant’s and the victim’s DNA.
The defendant initially claimed he had masturbated into the condom after giving the girl a lift home, the court heard.
He later changed his story and said his victim was a prostitute and he had paid her £20 for sex – claims he maintained during his trial.
However, a jury rejected his version of events, and found him guilty of rape.
Barrister Robin Rouch, for Shahin, said his client had worked since coming to the UK from Bangladesh, and regularly sent money back to his country of birth to support his family.
The barrister said there had been no concerns about his behaviour prior to the incident, and that his client had not picked up the girl with the intention of raping her.
Judge Geraint Walters told Shahin his claim the teenager had been working as a prostitute was a “scandalous assertion which the jury found to be a complete lie”.
He said: “It seems to me you probably picked up this girl because you observed she appeared to be heavily under the influence of alcohol – to an extent she was targeted.
“By the time you drove to McDonald’s that night you had decided to see if you could have sex with her.
“By the time you raped her, you knew she was under the influence of alcohol and drugs.”
Shahin was sentenced to a decade in prison, and will be on the sex offenders’ register for the rest of his life.
Speaking after the sentencing, South Wales Police detective sergeant Mark Kayes said: “Despite the serious sexual assault the victim had the strength and courage to support the police prosecution and gave vital evidence of her harrowing and traumatic experience.
“This sexual predator used his taxi as a means to take the vulnerable victim to a place, which she thought was her home, but instead he used the situation to commit rape.”
He added: “In addition, I would like to highlight that the victim was supported throughout by specialist officers, from Morriston CID, who continue to work tirelessly for victims of sexual assault and target and pursue individuals who exploit the most vulnerable persons within our society.”