Belfast Telegraph

Taxi driver accused of rape is a predator, hearing told

A taxi driver was described as a “predatory attacker” when he appeared in court in Londonderry yesterday charged with raping a woman in the city last Thursday.

Kieron Brian Coyle, from Forest Park, Killygordon in Co Donegal, denies raping the woman and also denies other sex assault charges.

The offences are alleged to have occurred in the 39-year-old’s taxi in the Galliagh area of the city.

A police officer told District Judge Barney McElholm that she opposed the defendant being granted bail “because it is believed he is a predatory attacker who poses a risk to females in general when he picks up fares”.

The officer said that as a result of the defendant's arrest “we are reviewing a number of cases locally of a similar nature”.

The police officer added that the defendant has one conviction for intimidating a witness, and that “two allegations from two women of a sexual nature were not proceeded with”.

She said the defendant's taxi had been seized and the vehicle was being examined.

Applying for bail, defence solicitor Kieron McGuinness said that the complainant was seen on CCTV getting into the front seat of the defendant's taxi in Shipquay Street.

He said she told the police that the alleged incidents took place in the back seat of the taxi.

He said after he'd dropped off the complainant at her address, the defendant then proceeded to collect another fare.

Bail was refused and the defendant was remanded in custody for a video-link hearing on January 12.

In a separate case, Judge McElholm refused to grant bail to a 19-year-old man from London who has been in custody for the past five months charged with raping a 15-year-old girl.

Adam Titheridge, whose address was given as Glenside Road in Derry, denies raping the girl on July 8 in the grounds of Foyle and Londonderry College.

He also denies assaulting her.

Opposing the application, a police officer told the District Judge at the city's Magistrates Court that the bail address given by the applicant was unacceptable to the police because it was close to five schools and because an 18-year-old woman lived with the applicant's mother.

The bail application was refused and the defendant was remanded |in continuing custody until January |12 next year.

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