A taxi driver who pretended he was a doctor to impress women he met on a dating website before secretly filming them naked and blackmailing them by threatening to post the footage online has been jailed.
Farhan Mirza, 38, who targeted Muslim women, was sentenced to eight and a half years after being found guilty of blackmail, voyeurism, sexual assault, theft and fraud.
Four-times married Mirza tried to impress his victims by hanging surgical scrubs in his wardrobe and carrying a stethoscope when in fact he was a taxi driver and part-time IT worker living with his mother in a terrace house in Abertillery, south Wales.
The prosecution told Cardiff crown court that Mirza was a sexual predator who threatened to bring shame upon three Muslim women and their families unless they gave him money and gifts.
The father-of-one met two victims on shaadi.com, which describes itself as the world’s biggest match-making website.
Timothy Evans, prosecuting, told the court: “It is the prosecution’s case that Mr Mirza is a particular kind of sexual predator and he chooses his victims carefully.
“Because of their religious and ethnic backgrounds, he targeted them because of the terror, embarrassment and humiliation that each of these ladies would have felt in their minds by what this defendant did to them.”
One of the victims went to the police in 2014 and investigations led to the other two complainants.
She said Mirza told her he was an IT manager, his brother was head of security at an airport, his sister was a doctor and his father a director of a utility company in Pakistan. “Everything was a lie,” she said.
The woman described her shock at discovering numerous home movies of Mirza having sex with various women.
“He didn’t have one or two – there were hundreds of them. I was there, too. I had no idea that he was filming when we were together, or had hidden cameras. Never, ever would I have consented to that,” she said.
Another woman told jurors that Mirza claimed he was a successful hospital surgeon with a house in London and had promised to buy her a £25,000 diamond ring.
“He told me he was a surgeon, so I thought he was a surgeon. He told me he was single, never married and was a virgin,” she said.
Mirza claimed he was scared of one of the victims, insisting she had links to the Taliban and that he threatened to send embarrassing photos of her “just to shut her up”.
Jailing Mirza, Judge Tom Crowther accused him of “pure misogyny”.
Outside court, Gwent police said he was “manipulative, deceitful and callous” and praised the victims’ great bravery and dignity.