Robber held knife to taxi driver’s throat

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A TEENAGE robber from Clitheroe lured a taxi driver to a West Bradford address before threatening him at knifepoint.

Blackburn magistrates heard the 17-year-old boy donned a balaclava and armed himself with a lock-knife during the “pre-meditated” offence. The court was also told that the driver, from Tiger Taxis, suffered a cut to his hand as he struggled with the boy who had held the blade to his neck.

The youth, who cannot be named because of his age, pleaded guilty to robbing Mohammed Shafiq on November 2nd. He was made subject to a 12-month referral order and ordered to pay £350 in compensation to his victim.

Mr Peter Wilde (prosecuting) said the case presented a difficult sentencing exercise because it was the boy’s first conviction.

“The options open to the bench are a referral order or a detention and training order,” said Mr Wilde.

He said the boy had returned home in the early hours of the morning after drinking with friends and had hatched the plan to raise some money by robbing a taxi driver. He withheld his number when ordering a taxi to an address in West Bradford, which he chose because it was a cul-de-sac.

“When the taxi driver arrived at the address a male came to his window and he felt something against his neck,” said Mr Wilde. “The defendant demanded money, but after agreeing the taxi driver then grabbed hold of the knife, cutting his thumb in the process.”

Mr Jonathan Taylor (defending) said his client was a young man who knew he had done a terrible thing.

“He can’t explain why he has done it,” said Mr Taylor. “It was a moment of complete and utter madness and I would ask you to give him a chance to prove this was totally out of character.”