Man guilty of Leith Links knifepoint rape

A MAN is facing a prison sentence after being convicted of raping a prostitute at knifepoint on Leith Links.

Faizan Ali raped the victim at Leith Links.
Faizan Ali raped the victim at Leith Links.

Faizan Ali attacked the 29-year-old sex worker - who cannot be named for legal reasons - in November 2014.

Edinburgh High Court heard how Ali, who has previous convictions, forced the woman to perform a sex act on him against her will.

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Today a jury convicted 24-year-old Ali, a prisoner of HMP Edinburgh, of rape following a three day trial.

Police search the area at Leith Links after the attack.Pic: Neil Hanna

They had heard evidence from the woman who told the court how Ali’s actions had left her feeling “violated and scared.”

Ali’s terrified victim earlier told a jury how she was attacked in the early hours of November 13 last year, as Ali held a knife to her body and demanded she give him cash.

When she failed to give him money, the mother of one told the court that he forced her to perform a sex act before raping her and said her ordeal seemed to last “like a lifetime.”

She added: “I felt violated and scared.

“I told him I had a daughter. I was crying through the whole thing begging him to stop. But he wouldn’t.

“It was horrible. I was scared.”

The woman told prosecution lawyer Shirley McKenna she had been working in the Leith area as a prostitute but was getting ready to go home as it wasn’t a busy evening.

The woman told the court that Ali approached her in the street and asked her for sex.

She told the court that she said she was heading home and crossed the road - however, he followed her and spoke to her.

She said: “He said he had a £100 note. He wanted business. I asked him to show me it but he brought out a knife.

“He brought out a knife and held it to my ribs to begin with - that’s when he asked me to get my money out. I didn’t have any money and I told him that but he wouldn’t take it for an answer.

“He stuck the knife into my ribs.”

When Ms McKenna asked the woman how she felt, she replied: “Scared. He kept on saying ‘get your money out, get your dough out’.

“He said he knew I was a working girl and that I had money on me.

“I genuinely didn’t have any money on me. It was a quiet night.”

The woman told the court that Ali forced her to perform a sex act on him. She also alleged that he searched her personal possessions and found the woman’s post office bank card in her belongings.

She added: “I asked him not to hurt me. I begged him. I told him I had no money.”

“He told me that he would stab the life out of me if I didn’t get the money out of my account.”

The woman managed to escape when she saw two men walking through the park and told them about what had happened to her.

She said: “I remember saying he raped me, he attacked me; that he had a knife.”

Following the jury’s verdict, Ms McKenna handed Lord Burns a schedule of previous convictions for Ali.

Deferring sentence for the court to obtain reports, the judge told Ali that he was being placed on the Sex Offenders Register.

He added: “The case will next call for sentencing in Edinburgh on July 14 2015.”

Defence solicitor advocate Brian Gilfedder told the judge that he would address the court on behalf of his client at the sentencing hearing.