May 2021

‘Predatory’ sex offender pretended to be taxi driver to abuse teenager in his car

A “calculated and predatory” sex offender pretended to be a taxi driver to pick up a teenage girl and abuse her in his car.

Ricardas Mikuckis, from Newport, Wales, pounced after spotting his then-18-year-old victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, trying to get a cab home from Cardiff city centre on August 29, 2019.

CCTV footage captured the 33-year-old in his red Ford Kuga in Greyfriars Road shortly before the teenager left a nightclub and tried to flag a taxi down.

Cardiff Crown Court heard how Mikuckis pulled up next to the victim after watching her talk to a taxi driver, who lent her his phone to try and call someone to provide the fare home before she walked off.

Believing him to be a licensed taxi driver, the victim got into the vehicle.

But she became alarmed when they neared Barry but the driver took an unexpected turn off the A4231 Barry Docks Link Road into a secluded lane,

The victim told him he was going the wrong way but Mikuckis stopped the car before calmly getting out, locking the doors, and smoking a cigarette.

He then returned and sexually assaulted the victim, kissing and touching her, before she managed to fight him off and flee the scene.

The visibly distressed woman flagged down a passing car and told the driver she had been attacked.

The alarm was raised and following painstaking trawls of CCTV and using ANPR technology Mikuckis was traced and arrested. A cigarette butt found at the scene also contained his DNA.

Mikuckis denied sexual assault but was found guilty on March 11. He has now been sentenced to 15 months in prison.