A 22-year-old man has been given a 10-year jail term after he was convicted of rape and attempted rape following predatory attacks on women he met at nightclubs in Bristol and London.
Alhaji Sesay, a former player for Bristol City FC and the Sierra Leone national team, was convicted of one count of rape and two of attempted rape against two separate women following a trial at Bristol Crown Court. He was found not guilty of a second charge of rape.
At the sentencing hearing today, HHJ Cullum told Sesay he was a rapist and a sexual predator who used “a veneer of charm and flirtatious behaviour” to put himself close to women who he perceived to be targets. He said his actions had significantly affected both victims, with one of them suffering severe psychological harm.
Sesay was arrested on 11 July 2019 following an incident at Mbargo nightclub, on The Triangle, Bristol, after he trapped a woman in a toilet cubicle and attempted to rape her.
The victim managed to break free and raise the alarm with her friends and door staff, resulting in Sesay being detained and arrested at the scene. CCTV of him inside the club is below.
At his trial, the court heard how Sesay also followed a woman into the toilets and forced his way into a cubicle at the Hart Lounge in Southgate, London, where he carried out an attack in which he committed rape and attempted rape. This offence was investigated by our colleagues at the Met Police.
Sesay, of Plumstead, London, was charged in connection with the offences in Bristol and London in August 2020.
DC Toby Hayes of Bristol CID, said: “Alhaji Sesay is a predatory sexual offender who would brazenly target women at random at nightclubs.
“CCTV footage gathered during the police investigations showed him going into female toilets, where he carried out his attacks.
“The victims have all been through a harrowing experience. I want to pay tribute to their incredible bravery and courage for reporting the offences committed against them, for giving crucial evidence in court and for supporting our investigation, which has resulted in this dangerous sexual offender being brought to justice. I would also like to thank the many members of the public who assisted with our enquiries and helped to ensure justice was served.
“Due to the nature of Sesay’s offending, it’s possible there are other victims out there who haven’t yet reported incidents to us. I would encourage them to place their faith and confidence in the police and come forward. You will be listened to, believed and respected. If you don’t want to speak to the police, please speak to someone.”
If you’ve been a victim of sexual abuse, recent or non-recent, you don’t have to speak to the police. You can self-refer to The Bridge, a Sexual Assault Referral Centre available 24/7 365 days a year. Visit their website at www.thebridgecanhelp.org.uk or call 0117 342 6999.
For more advice and support, visit www.thisisnotanexcuse.org