Taxi driver sought over Halloween rape bid in Tseung Kwan O
A hunt has been launched for a taxi driver accused of trying to rape a drunken woman passenger on her way home from Halloween celebrations.
Police said he drove the 27-year-old accountant to a secluded area after she fell asleep in his cab and attacked her, tying her hands when she tried to escape.
An "astonished" taxi drivers' association leader has pledged to help police catch the attacker.
A 24-year-old female friend, who had been partying with the woman in Lan Kwai Fong, hailed the taxi for her in Wellington Street at about 3.30am on Thursday to take her home to Tseung Kwan O. When she fell asleep the cabbie drove her to an area near a service reservoir on Tsui Lam Road in Tseung Kwan O. She awoke between 4am and 5am to find him climbing all over her.
When she struggled, the cabbie hit her, tied her hands and covered her face. He released her at about 6am, giving her HK$70 to take another taxi.
The victim returned home and reported the attack, accompanied by a friend, in the afternoon. She was taken to Tseung Kwan O Hospital for treatment.
Police described the attacker as aged 35 to 50, slim, with long black hair. Kwun Tong district crime squad is handling the case, and treating it as attempted rape.
Officers urged anyone with information to call 2709 8332.
Kwan Yuk-wah, chairman of the Urban Taxi Drivers Association Joint Committee, was astonished by the attack and had not heard of such an incident in the past 10 years.
"I believe it will not be difficult to get him," he said, pledging to use the cabbies' network to help police catch the culprit.
Irene Ng Wai-ching, of the Association for Concern for Legal Rights of Victims of Domestic Violence, said she was "very angry" because the culprit had taken advantage of a drunken woman. She said he had damaged public trust in taxi drivers.
"We used to believe we were safe getting into a taxi, but it was actually not the case," said Ng.
She advised women to try to memorise the driver's name and licence plate number when they board a taxi and call friends to report their routes.