An Uber driver has been jailed for sexually assaulting an “utterly defenceless” female passenger as she leaned out of his cab door to vomit.
Temur Shah, 45, groped the 27-year-old woman after picking her up from a London address in the early hours of the morning in January last year.
Isleworth Crown Court heard that Shah stopped the car when the passenger said she felt unwell during the journey and asked her to move into the front seat.
When she told him she was about to vomit he stopped a second time, then leaned over to open the door and put his hand under her bra.
He then continued the assault, touching her genital area over her clothes, while she was sick into the gutter.
Afterwards she told Shah not to touch her, but was forced to stay inside the vehicle as she had no money or battery on her phone to call for help.
She reported the incident to the police, who used a combination of CCTV and GPS data from Uber to identify Shah as the suspect. He was arrested in February 2018.
Prosecutor Kate Blumgart said that since the incident the victim had difficulty getting into taxis – she recently had a panic attack in a mini-cab – and was fearful that Shah knew where she lived.
Sentencing Shah to 16 months behind bars, Judge Nicholas Wood said: “You had a young woman in your trust, in your cab, late at night.
“She was utterly defenceless as she turned away from you facing the gutter.”
He said jail time was unavoidable, despite the defence claiming that Shah was “fearful of going to prison” because he looked after his three children and elderly mother while his wife was at work.
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