Police: London cabbie may have assaulted 100 women

AP News
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Posted: Oct 26, 2010 10:25 AM
Police: London cabbie may have assaulted 100 women

Police believe that a London taxi driver convicted of a string of attacks on female passengers is linked to more than 100 cases of sexual assault.

Scotland Yard said Tuesday that a total of 102 women have said they were victimized by 53-year-old John Worboys, who was convicted of assaulting 12 of his passengers in a highly publicized trial last year.

Worboys drove one of London's iconic black cabs, the distinctive sedans that ferry busy Londoners across the city. Worboys' case attracted a lot of attention in part because the cabs are advertised as one of the capital's safest forms of transport, particularly for women. Black cab drivers undergo rigorous testing and are subject to criminal checks, and they're often touted as a trustworthy alternative to the unregulated cab drivers who try to poach customers by undercutting official rates.

Prosecutors accused Worboys of picking his victims up at trendy west London nightspots, telling them he'd won money in the lottery, and inviting them to partake in a celebratory glass of champagne. Secreted inside the drinks were powerful sedatives, and those who joined him in a drink often remembered little of what happened next.

One victim said that what should have been a 40-minute trip home took three hours. Others were left with semen stains on their clothes, and items or DNA from some victims was found by police at Worboys' home.

Worboys denied the charges, but in March of last year he was found guilty of assaulting 12 women. Police say he may have attacked at least 90 more victims, but the nature of his crimes meant that few women could be sure what had happened to them.