London

London black cab driver jailed for sex attacks on sleeping women

David Perry Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Perry told police he had been "worried about what he might do" because of his high hormone levels

A black cab driver who sexually assaulted two women who fell asleep in his taxi has been jailed for 10 years.

David Perry, 52, targeted the women, in their 20s, after they had been out drinking and socialising before getting in his cab.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard he told police he had "high hormone levels".

Perry from Bow, east London, a taxi driver for 25 years, admitted four charges, including attempted rape and sexual assault.

The offences were committed in the early hours, against women in their 20s, before getting into Perry's cab and falling asleep.

'Serious psychological harm'

His DNA was matched to both attacks, which happened in January 2013 in north London and in east London, last May.

After his arrest, the court heard, Perry told police he had been "worried about what he might do" and had sought medical help for high hormone levels after the break-up of a relationship.

Sentencing Perry, Judge John Lafferty said his victims had suffered "serious psychological harm".

He told Perry he would pose "a very significant risk" to other women if he were allowed to remain at large in the community.

As he was led out of the dock, Perry smiled and waved at his family and friends in the court's public gallery.

On what would have been the first day of his trial in February, Perry admitted one count of attempted rape, one count of assault by penetration and one count of sexual assault against each victim.

'Exploited vulnerability'

Prosecutor Peter Clement told the court: "They were, by virtue of their drunkenness, particularly vulnerable.

"Their incapacity made them no less deserving than anyone else of being safe. They each sought the security and safety they were entitled to expect from a London taxi - a black cab.

"He exploited his passengers' obvious vulnerability for his own sexual gratification."

Police said Perry had been eliminated from unsolved cases, but appealed to potential victims to contact police.

Perry was also stopped from driving taxis in the future and will be on the sex offenders indefinitely, under a sexual harm prevention order.

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