A defiant taxi rapist has denied returning to work as a cab driver following his release from prison and continues to insist he is innocent of his crime.
Muhammad Akbar Nabi was caged for nine years in 2014 for raping and sexually assaulting a vulnerable woman in the back of his car after pretending to be the taxi she had ordered.
The father-of-three from Glengormley on the outskirts of north Belfast was released in 2018 after serving just four years in jail, and concerned sources recently contacted Sunday Life over rumours he had returned to working as a taxi driver.
However, when approached by our reporter at his home Mr Nabi denied the claims and insisted he was innocent despite his conviction being upheld at the Court of Appeal in 2015.
The 54-year-old told our reporter: "I can tell you it's not true. I'm not a taxi driver and I haven't even applied for a licence or anything. I'm totally innocent of the crime. I'm still going through another appeal, which is ongoing with the European Court of Human Rights and I'm still fighting - you've got to fight it off.
"What more can you talk about? So many innocent people this happens to. It's no big story. It's an awful stressful thing to go through, especially when you haven't done the crime you're accused of.
"It's very stressful, definitely, but you just have to try and put your life together again and try to get on with things. You have to try and repair your life."
One concerned resident, who did not wish to be named, said the local community were worried about Nabi's rumoured return to work as well as his presence in the area.
They added: "If he is back driving a taxi, it's completely wrong after the crime he was convicted of.
"It's bad enough having someone like that living here, let alone driving people around. He should be ashamed.
"People in the community are rightly worried about someone like him being back on the streets."
Nabi was jailed in 2014 following a trial at Downpatrick Crown Court which heard how he had pretended to be driving the taxi his victim had ordered.
Once she was in the car he drugged her before forcing her to perform a sex act on him.
The court heard that on the day of the attack Nabi, then aged 44, was cruising around the village of Moneyreagh in Co Down. The woman said she had been at a barbecue party in the village when Nabi arrived and pretended to be the taxi she had called.
She said once inside the car he forced her to drink from a bottle of water that "had a syrupy texture".
The woman said this had the effect of paralysing her and rendered her only able to utter a whimper. Nabi then sexually assaulted her and forced her to perform a sex act on him.
The woman said that at one stage Nabi said to her, "Daddy knows what you want", and that he only stopped when she said he would be attacked by other people. Nabi then dumped her from his car, removed the taxi sign and fled the scene.
Following his trial, the jury convicted him of one count of oral rape and one count of sexual assault.
In 2015 Nabi launched an appeal bid to have his conviction overturned.
He claimed it was actually the victim who had performed a sex act on him and she continued to do so even after he asked her to stop.
But Lord Justice Girvan, sitting along with Lord Justices Coghlin and Gillen, rejected all grounds of the challenge.