A 29-YEAR-OLD man has gone on trial accused of robbing three Yorkshire cabbies at knife-point.
Mohammed Akbar, of Rashcliffe Hill Road, Lockwood, Huddersfield, is alleged to have to have robbed Sheffield cabbie Zahid Mahmood Bhatti in October last year after he, his wife and three young children took a taxi ride back to Huddersfield.
Prosecutor Sophie Drake told Bradford Crown Court yesterday that Akbar and his family were taken back to their home, but after his wife and children went in the house he returned to Mr Bhatti’s vehicle and threatened him with a four-inch bladed knife.
Mr Bhatti, who was described as being shocked and scared by the incident, handed over £80.
After being arrested and interviewed about that incident, the prosecution allege that Akbar went on to commit two more knifepoint robberies in May and June this year.
His second victim is alleged to have been Keighley-based private hire driver Mohammed Ibrar, who had £60 taken from him, after Akbar and his wife took a late night taxi ride from Keighley back to the Bradley area of Huddersfield on May 7.
Again Akbar allegedly produced a knife and demanded the cabbie’s money from him.
Miss Drake said a few weeks after that incident Mr Ibrar picked out Akbar during identification procedures.
The third robbery allegedly involved Leeds taxi driver Chaudhry Nazam, who picked up Akbar and his wife at the railway station on June 8.
After driving the couple to various addresses in Beeston and Mirfield, Mr Nazam eventually had a knife held to his throat by Akbar and he handed over £30 in cash.
During his various police interviews, Akbar accepted taking the taxi journeys, but claimed that there had been arguments about the fare.
He denied using a knife to rob any of the drivers.
Akbar has pleaded not guilty to three charges of robbery.
His trial is expected to last until Friday.
The trial continues.