A woman who falsely accused a taxi driver of a knifepoint sex attack has been jailed after he exposed her lies using an app on his mobile phone.
Mohammed Asif was left in tears in a police cell after Astria Berwick told officers he had carried out an assault on her in his cab.
But the 34-year-old eventually proved his innocence with a voice recording app he was using in his taxi because his CCTV was broken.
Berwick, of Bingham, Notts, was sentenced to 16 months in prison after admitting perverting the course of justice.
Nottingham Crown Court heard she had used Mr Asif’s taxi on February 20, then called police to say she had been the victim of a serious sexual assault.
Judge Michael Stokes QC, The Recorder of Nottingham, said: “This was outrageous behaviour by the defendant against a wholly innocent man who had been saved by the recording on his phone.”
Berwick had invented the story for “some unaccountable reason”, he added.
Mr Asif, a father-of-two from Carlton, Nottingham, said the experience had torn his life apart, leaving him unable to face working again for a month, having problems sleeping and causing him to lose a stone in weight.
He said: “She changed my life. I’m completely different now. I’m scared to go out.
“I keep thinking, ‘I just dropped her off, she was just a normal passenger, why has she done that?”
He said he felt “really lucky” he had switched on the app on the day of the alleged attack, as without it he believed he would now be on remand waiting to face trial.
He added: “If I ever met her again, although I don’t want to, I’d just ask ‘why?'”