A cabbie savagely beaten by two customers he’d taken pity on while off-duty relived his ordeal as he returned to work this week.
Ali Rassouli, 64, of Latona Drive, Gravesend, was punched and kicked after having a chemical sprayed in his eyes in the brutal robbery.
He had not been working when approached by two men for a lift while filling up his taxi at the BP petrol station on Milton Road, Gravesend.
Taxi driver Ali Rassouli, who was attacked
He said: “I pulled into the garage and fuelled and then saw this chap walking towards me. He said can you give me a ride to Denton?
“Both of them tried to sit in the middle back seat but eventually one sat behind me and one next to me.
"We got up to where the Honda garage is and then they said can we go to the Elliot estate and then they wanted to go to towards Denton and Dickens Road.
“I went to the end of Dickens Road, just at the beginning of Shamrock, and they said how much? It was £6.90 but because I was going home, I just said £5.
An efit of the man wanted
“Something was wrong, I thought they were just going to run away but then they jumped on me.
"One of them had a sharp object, like scissors, and I jumped back towards the door and I thought my God, something is going to happen and then the one in the back splashed something across my face. It went into my eye and it was just boiling.”
He abandoned his car and fled along Shamrock Road but the pair pursued him as he called for help.
He added: “I was shouting ‘police, police’ very loudly thinking someone might come out or open their door and this might deter them but it didn’t.
“I went to a door and I got no response. On the other side of the road I realised there was a regular customer of mine and the light was on.
“I ran over and shouted ‘please help, call the police’ but the lady was alone and didn’t answer the door but she did ring the police and that was wonderful.
“In the meantime, these two turned up and kicked and punched me. My mobile was in my hand and he tried to grab it from me.
“I was feeling sick from all the punches and I thought maybe if they get the mobile, they’d go away and then I fainted" - taxi driver Ali Rassouli
“I was feeling sick from all the punches and I thought maybe if they get the mobile, they’d go away and then I fainted.”
When Mr Rassouli came to, police and an ambulance were at the scene. Mr Rassouli discovered his car had been ransacked but the attackers had failed to take the money box under his seat which contained about £25 in change.
He was taken to Darent Valley Hospital where his eye was washed out and Mr Rassouli began driving his cab again on Monday - 10 days after his ordeal.
He added: “I am nervous about what happened now that I’m driving again. I don’t know how long it’s going to stay with me. I feel anxious and my eye is still sore to the touch.”
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