Manchester

Manchester taxi tracker 'proves rape accuser lied'

Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court
Image caption The prosecution said the case was the "clearest possible example" of perverting the course of justice

A taxi driver could have found himself on trial for rape had a tracker device not been fitted to his vehicle, a jury heard.

Laura Hood, 27, of Stockport, Greater Manchester, claimed cab driver Haroon Yousaf raped her after a night out in January 2017.

Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court heard the tracker "proved her account of being raped is simply untrue".

Ms Hood denies perverting the course of justice.

The court heard Mr Yousaf was arrested and kept in custody for 20 hours the day after the allegation was made against him.

Prosecutor Geoff Whelan said it was "extremely fortunate" his taxi was fitted with the device as it recorded the exact route the taxi had taken and at no point did it turn off into a side street, as claimed by the defendant.

Shortly after Ms Hood was dropped off near her home on 8 January 2017 the defendant told her mother and stepfather she had been raped and they called the police, the court heard.

Officers were told the driver had travelled the "wrong way", pulled over and raped her in the back of the cab, jurors heard.

No physical evidence

Mr Whelan said Ms Hood got into Mr Yousaf's taxi outside a bar in Deansgate Locks.

She insisted he drop her off at the end of her street and paid the fare telling Mr Yousaf to keep the £4 change, said Mr Whelan.

No forensic evidence showed any physical contact between Mr Yousaf and the defendant, jurors heard.

Ms Hood had described her attacker as in his late 50s and with no facial hair but Mr Younas is aged 29 with a full beard, the court heard.

Mr Whelan said it was a "clearest possible example" of perverting the course of justice.

He said she now accepts Mr Yousaf did not rape her, but she believed she was raped in the taxi and therefore she denied the charge.

The trial continues.

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