Page last updated at 17:51 GMT, Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Sex charge driver had drug in cab

John Worboys
Mr Worboys is accused of assaulting 14 women

A taxi driver accused of sexually assaulting 14 female passengers and raping one of them has admitted to having sleeping tablets in his cab.

John Worboys, 51, from Rotherhithe, south-east London, told Croydon Crown Court he mixed the pills with a drink on his way home to help him sleep.

He also said he lied to police when he denied having sexual encounters with passengers in his black taxi.

Mr Worboys denies 23 charges including rape and sexual assault.

'Spiked drinks'

He is accused of giving drinks spiked with drugs to women he picked up outside night spots in his cab before sexually assaulting them.

He admitted he engaged in sexual activity with some customers but denied spiking their drinks.

Prosecuting, Johannah Cutts QC read a statement Mr Warboys made after his arrest in February last year, in which he denied touching any of his passengers in a sexual way in his cab.

Miss Cutts said: "That's a lie, isn't it?"

Mr Worboys replied: "Yes, but I had my reasons for putting that statement, because I thought it was irrelevant because it was consensual."

'To help sleep'

The court also heard Mr Worboys had the sleeping pill temazepam in his cab and that the same drug was found in the urine of one of his alleged victims.

He said the drug was to help him sleep.

Ms Cutts said he was trying to explain away an awkward piece of evidence.

Mr Worboys said: "If I was out to drug these women, I would admit it now, and I did not drug these women."

The trial continues.

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