A kidnapper who abducted a terrified eight-year-old boy off the street, and sexually abused him in his car, was jailed for six years and four months.
Mohammed Irfan Bajiwala, a married father-of-two, also behaved indecently towards two other schoolboys, aged 10 and 12.
Judge Simon Hammond said: “What happened to these three boys is every parents’ worst nightmare.
“These boys will never forget what happened.”
Bajiwala (35) used the same ruse when preying on the victims during the day on Leicester’s streets – by asking them to help him find ‘lost’ keys in his black Vauxhall Astra.
The eight-year-old was walking along Mere Road, Highfields, en route to meet his grandfather, at 1.30pm on Saturday May 3 this year.
Neil Bannister, prosecuting, told Leicester Crown Court: “The defendant called the boy over and asked him to look for keys in his car.
“He placed him in the rear of his car, where the boy recalls seeing a child’s seat and a book of football stickers.
“He tried to get out but the child locks were operating and he couldn’t.”
Bajiwala drove off with the boy a short distance to a nearby pub car park, at the Charny Inn, Spinney Hill Road.
The defendant got out and by chance saw a man he knew and they had a brief chat.
Mr Bannister said: “The boy tried to signal for help but the man left.”
Bajiwala got in the car and told the child to lie down on the back seat, before unsuccessfully trying to remove his trousers.
He then simulated sex with the clothed child, before dropping him off in the vicinity of Hartington Road, near Spinney Hill Park – and giving him the book of football stickers.
In a victim impact statement, the boy’s father said his son was “frightened and upset” and is now wary of strangers and reluctant to go out.
Bajiwala left his DNA on the boy’s trousers which led to his arrest.
Police linked the defendant to two similar earlier incidents.
At 1pm on Sunday March 30, a 12-year-old boy in Constance Road, north Evington, was approached by the defendant, who asked him to help him look for keys inside his car.
As the boy bent over on all fours leaning, in through a rear passenger door, the defendant exposed himself and began simulating sex, rubbing himself against the boy’s buttocks.
The victim ran off..
Some days earlier, a 10-year-old making his way home from school along Mornington Street, off Uppingham Road, was also stopped and asked to help look for keys.
On this occasion the defendant had his young daughter in the back of his car, and told her to get out and she remained nearby.
As the boy bent over to search under the driver’s seat he felt a “nudge-like push to his back.”
He backed away and went home to tell his mother.
Sentencing, Judge Hammond said Bajiwala presented a risk of danger to the public.
He said: “He targeted young and vulnerable children because they were on the street alone.
“A significant degree of planning was involved and he used the same system.”
Bajiwala, of King Edward Road, off Uppingham Road, Leicester, had an additional seven years extended onto his licence period, following his release.
The court heard that although he had no previous convictions, Bajiwala received a police caution in 2008 for common assault upon an 11-year-old boy, whilst on duty as a bus driver in London.
He got out of the cab and sat next to the boy – his only passenger – and kissed his cheek, before making an excuse to go on the top deck, where he asked the child to sit on his knee, but the boy refused.
Stephen Lowne, mitigating, said it was “a tragedy” he was not prosecuted for a sexual offence in relation to the boy in 2008, instead of being cautioned for a lesser offence, as he may have received treatment “and we might not be here today.”
He said Bajiwala was a victim of sexual abuse as a child, at a boarding school in India.
Judge Hammond said Bajiwala may have been a victim as a child, but said: “It doesn’t mean he has to go and do it to someone else years later.”
Mr Lowne said the kidnap offence was of a short duration, no violence was used, and the boy was returned to a familiar street afterwards.
He said: “He apologises for what he’s done and acknowledges he’s got a problem and has done wrong.
“He’s amenable to treatment to prevent anything like this happening again.
“He’s ashamed and embarrassed.
“He knew what he was doing but felt unable to help himself at the time.”
The defendant admitted sexual assault and kidnapping the eight-year-old, sexually assaulting the 12-year-old and attempted sexual assault of the 10-year-old.
Bajiwala will have to enlist on a sex offender register for life and was made the subject of a sexual offences prevention order, banning future unsupervised contact with children under 16.
Afterwards, Det Sgt Dave Speight said: “Understandably, these incidents left the victim’s extremely upset and shaken.
“Bajiwala went out and purposely targeted young children on several occasions.
“By pleading guilty he spared the victims the ordeal of giving evidence in court.
“There is a possibility that there are other victims out there who have not come forward and spoken to police. I would encourage anyone who believes they, or a member of their family, have been a victim to come forward and contact us.
“It’s not always easy to come forward and report such crimes but please be assured that your concerns will be taken seriously. We have specialist officers and access to a number of agencies who can guide and support you throughout the process.”