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Phone application saves taxi driver from false rape claim

By Mason White 10:09 AM July 5, 2013
Astria Berwick 

By: Sarah Weiss
(Scroll down for video) A taxi driver was arrested after a woman accused him of slashing her face before raping her.

The woman went through great lengths to make her story believable.

The innocent taxi driver only escaped charges of sexual assault after a cell phone application exposed the woman as a liar.

Mohammed Asif of Carlton near Nottingham, United Kingdom, was arrested after a female passenger told police that he threatened her with a knife before sexually assaulting her. Astria Berwick, 27, cut her own face in an attempt to back up her false accusations.

When Mr. Asif, 45, was arrested, his parents and his two young children were made aware of the claims. The ordeal only ended after Asif told police that he records all passengers while they ride in his car.

Officers listened to the recording on his phone of the time when Berwick rode in his car and they agreed that the woman had lied to them. The recording, on an application downloaded to his Samsung Galaxy S2 smartphone, revealed that no assault has taken place in the car.

“She really has turned my life upside down and I really wish I can go back to what it used to be, but life is hard right now,” Asif said. “Now I feel scared to pick up passengers and always pray that the passenger is not a woman alone,” he added.
Mr. Asif, started recording all passengers through the application after the CCTV in his car stopped working.

After Asif proved that he was innocent, Berwick of Bingham in Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom was arrested and jailed for 16 months for perverting the course of justice. At her sentencing Judge Michael Stokes reprimanded the woman and said: “If he had not recorded the conversation, which proved that nothing had happened in the car, then he would probably still be in custody awaiting trial.”

Detective Con Laura Clarke of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “Falsely reporting crimes such as this one not only causes damage to the innocent victim, but real victims may be reluctant to report crimes.”