Monday, March 9, 2009

Good Samaritan falsely accused of rape

The following is a tragic story of a cab driver who tried to help a woman and was falsely accused of rape. He was arrested and subjected to an intimate medical examination. Thankfully, modern technology -- here a video camera -- showed the woman turn into a "victim" only when police were coming. One must wonder when stories like this will give men pause to interact with women of a certain age that the men don't know. Of course, the sexual assault counselor quoted at the end of the story does not mention the hapless male falsely accused but she does feel sorry for the future, hypothetical, phantom, possible, could-be, even unborn rape victims who might be, possibly will be, may be dissuaded by such lies from coming forward. Since every sexual assault counselor pays lip service to those potential rape victims, why don't they advocate false rape prevention programs?

Woman jailed for false rape claim
By Michael Black

A 23-year-old woman has been jailed after falsely claiming she had been raped by a taxi driver in a bid to obtain £10,000 from him.

Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday how the cabbie acted as a Good Samaritan when Shabnam Masood flagged down his vehicle in September 2007 and told him she had been assaulted by her boyfriend.

She was jailed for six months after the court heard she intended to ask the driver, Mohammed Taj, to pay up £10,000 to avoid a court case.

Prosecutor Michelle Colborne said the taxi driver arranged for the woman to be put up at a hotel in Bradford after she claimed to be hungry and homeless and they later had consensual sex. But the next day Masood phoned the police and alleged that she had been abducted by two men.
She claimed she had been blind-folded, tied up and taken to an unknown location in a car where she was raped by one of the men.

The taxi driver was arrested, interviewed and subjected to an intimate medical examination.
But Miss Colborne said CCTV footage of Masood’s movements showed her behaving in a carefree manner until the police arrived.

“On sight of the police she throws herself to the ground and demonstrates the persona of a victim,’’ said Miss Colborne.

Masood, of Brompton Road, Bradford, pleaded guilty last month to a charge of perverting the course of justice and Judge Roger Scott said it was clear that the false rape claim had been designed to get £10,000 from the alleged attacker.

He told her: “I shall deal with you on the basis that £10,000 was what was envisaged by you as the end result”.

She now faces deportation as an overstayer in this country.

‘’The end result was that he (the alleged rapist) would not go to court, but you would receive £10,000 to share between you and your partner.”

Masood’s lawyer, Assumpta O’Rourke, described her as a vulnerable individual who was easily manipulated. She said: “Miss Masood fully accepts her wrong-doing.’’ Sakhawat Hussain, chairman of the Bradford Private Hire Association, said later: “All the drivers are vetted by the Criminal Record Bureau and if they have any convictions, serious or not serious, they are not allowed to get their taxi licences.

"When something like this comes out it gives the driver a bad name, his family and all the rest of the members a bad name – it puts a black scar on the person’s life.”

Barbara Siedlecki, manager of Star (Surviving Trauma After Rape), said: “A malicious false allegation is very detrimental and I think it stops people coming forward.

“If people are reading that these allegations are false and someone gets six months, it leads them not to report any incidents.”