**The following article contains details which readers may find disturbing**
A man has been found guilty of raping a 17 year old girl after he kidnapped her off the street in Hemel Hempstead.
Mohammed Atif Khan, of Upper Meadow in Chesham, Buckinghamshire, was convicted of the following counts on Thursday, March 17:
· Kidnap with intent to commit a sexual offence
· Oral rape
· Sexual assault by penetration
During Khan’s trial, Luton Crown Court heard how on the evening of Saturday, August 28 2021, he victim had been out socialising with friends and was waiting to be collected by her family at the rear of Primark on Waterhouse Street, when Khan drove past in his vehicle.
CCTV cameras showed Khan reversing back and parking up, before the 37-year-old got the victim into the vehicle. He then proceeded to drive her to Chesham before both sexually assaulting and raping her.
Khan then drove the traumatised victim back to Hemel Hempstead and told her she could get out of the car, leaving her to make her way back to the town centre where she was later collected by her family. She bravely told them what had happened, and they called the police.
An investigation was launched by the constabulary’s Sexual Offences Investigation Team before the case was later taken on by the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit (BCH MCU). Detectives trawled hours of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) and CCTV footage to ascertain the movements of the vehicle involved in the offence.
They identified a white Volkswagen Polo of interest, which was registered to Khan at an address in Chesham in Buckinghamshire. The vehicle was forensically recovered by Thames Valley Police, and Khan was arrested on Wednesday, September 1 2021.
Phone data analysis also placed Khan in the same locations as the victim at the time of the offences. Khan was later charged and after pleading not guilty, was remanded in custody ahead of his trial.
Following conviction, he was remanded back into custody and is awaiting sentencing at Luton Crown Court on Friday, May 13, 2022.
Detective Inspector Justine Jenkins, from the BCH MCU, led the investigation. She said: “News of this stranger attack caused understandable and considerable concern in the community at the time, so I am pleased to share that we have managed to secure a conviction on behalf of the victim.
“She has shown incredible courage throughout the whole investigation and court case, especially after Khan’s refusal to admit what he had done meant she had to endure the trauma of giving evidence. She has been supported by specially trained officers throughout and has also received additional help from partner organisations.
“Khan has shown himself to be a dangerous sexual predator who, when he saw the victim alone, decided to unashamedly exploit the situation for his own sickening gain. He is now behind bars as we await the outcome of his sentencing next month.”
Anyone in Hertfordshire who has experienced sexual abuse or sexual violence can contact the Herts Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) for practical and emotional support. The centre can arrange face-to-face support, sexual health referrals, and provide forensic medical examinations for those who want them. To contact Herts SARC, call the 24/7 helpline on 0808 178 4448, email Herts.SARC@nhs.net or visit www.hertssarc.org.