Ten years for rapist who attacked woman in bar

The Hart Lounge in Chase Road, Southgate and (inset) Alhaji Sesay
The Hart Lounge in Chase Road, Southgate and (inset) Alhaji Sesay (Main image credit Google; inset image credit Met Police)

Southgate attack came a year after similar assault in Bristol

A rapist who attacked a woman in a Southgate bar has been jailed.

Alhaji Sesay, 22 from Greenwich, was found guilty of committing rape and attempted rape at The Hart Lounge in Chase Road last August, plus another attempted rape at a Bristol venue in July 2019.

Last week he was sentenced at Bristol Crown Court to ten years’ imprisonment.

The Southgate attack on Sunday 30th August took place in the venue’s toilets, where the female victim was pushed into a cubicle and Sesay attempted to rape her. He then forced her to perform a sex act on him.

During the trial, the court heard that Sesay left the venue in a vehicle following the attack, but came back to the bar after being encouraged to by his friends. Police were now at the venue and officers arrested Sesay at the scene. In a police interview, Sesay claimed the victim had consented to sex, but this was later proven false.

The Southgate attack came a year after Sesay had assaulted a woman in a Bristol nightclub, where he had entered the ladies toilets and pushed the victim against a wall, sexually touching her through her clothing and attempting to force her into a sex act.

Security at the Bristol venue were alerted to the incident and Sesay was detained by staff until police officers arrived. Although he was arrested, Sesay denied attacking the woman and was subsequently released, pending further enquiries.

Last week the jury in the trial returned a majority verdict of guilty on two counts of attempted rape and one count of rape.

Detective Constable Kim Davies, who led the investigation, said: The actions of Alhaji Sesay were clearly that of a predator.

“He has on two separate occasions subjected women to violent acts in what should be a safe and private space. He has shown no remorse for his deplorable behaviour and the verdict is welcomed as it highlights that there is a price to be paid by those committing sexual offences, and that price is their freedom.

“I would like to thank the victims for their bravery in coming forward and supporting the investigation, which has resulted in taking a dangerous individual off the street.”

Detective Superintendent Seb Adjei-Addoh added: “We commend the courageous victims for coming forward and supporting the police investigation after what must have been a terrible and frightening experience.

“Thankfully stranger attacks such as these are rare but I hope this conviction goes some way to providing closure for the victims and sends a clear message to the public that such abhorrent acts will not be tolerated.”

As part of the same trial, Sesay was found not guilty of one count of rape in relation to a separate incident in Bristol that was dealt with by Avon and Somerset Police.

Detective Constable Toby Hayes, of Bristol CID, said: “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.”