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Stalker had key cut and entered victim's home.

Byline: ROB KENNEDY Court Reporter rob.kennedy@ncjmedia.co.uk @ChronicleCourt

A SLEAZY plumber subjected a customer to an obsessive campaign of stalking during which he left a sex toy and underwear in her home after secretly getting a key cut.

Shuaib Muhammad had been hired by a professional woman in her 20s to do some work at her Newcastle home and she left him the keys as she felt at ease with the 24-year-old.

But in a shocking betrayal of trust he sneaked off to Asda to get a key cut for the back door and went on to violate her house for his own sexual gratification while she was out at work.

He left a sex toy in her bathroom, she discovered items of women's clothing that were not hers had been left in the house and his DNA was found on a vest top.

Newcastle Crown Court heard as well as committing a sex act in the house, Muhammad made silent phone calls to the customer, stole her clothing and hacked her Facebook account to find out more about her. When the married dad was arrested, police found women's clothes, in various styles and sizes, as well as a sex toy, in his van.

The court heard it was not possible to identify where the clothing had come from due to the number of addresses Muhammad visited as part of his job as a plumber.

His victim, who lived alone, was left "utterly devastated" and in fear, and has had to move out, the court heard.

Now Muhammad, of Marshall Wallis Road, South Shields, has been jailed for two-and-a-half years after pleading guilty to stalking. He was also given a lifelong restraining order and a sexual harm prevention order for seven years.

Prosecutor Kevin Wardlaw told the court Muhammad had been hired by the woman to carry out work at her home last spring and she felt at ease with him due to their similar ages and backgrounds. She contacted him again last summer when a leak developed in her property.

Mr Wardlaw told the court: "She had to leave for work and left him in the house with keys for the address.

"He attended the local Asda, obtained a duplicate key for the back door and returned to the address and posted the keys she had left him through the letter box. The defendant, at various times while in the address, used her underwear for the purposes of sexual gratification.

"He stole items of clothing from the address. He did so for the purposes of masturbation and sexual gratification.

"He left a sex toy in the address, in a bathroom drawer.

The CPS able to "He also made attempts, and did succeed, in hacking her Facebook account, social media account, with a view to obtaining information and subjected her to a number of violated in sinister Kevin silent telephone calls at various times of the day, 20 in total. He was silent, which added to her distress."

The last time Muhammad visited the woman's home, he was unable to get access as the owner's key had been left in the back door, so he stole a pair of her gardening shoes that had been left outside.

The victim told police she now lives in fear someone "will get in or is actually in" her house and suffers nightmares. She said in a statement: "I cannot seem to find peace anymore." Recorder Ben Nolan QC said "the risk of serious sexual harm posed to young adult females remains high" and that Muhammad had become "obsessed" with the woman.

The judge told Muhammad: "For the time being, she is utterly devastated by what you did to her and within her home."

Fiona Lamb, mitigating, said Muhammad is "embarrassed and ashamed of himself and the shame he has brought on his family".

Miss Lamb said Muhammad has sought professional therapy to deal with his problems. She added: "The defendant clearly has serious issues regarding sex and has voluntarily sought assistance."

After the case, prosecutor Mr Wardlaw said: "The victim in this case placed an enormous amount of trust in Shuaib Muhammad, who initially presented himself as a very professional and competent plumber. "By building a robust case, the CPS has been able to show how Muhammad violated that trust in increasingly sinister ways, motivated by an apparent infatuation with the victim.

"The effects of stalking and harassment can be devastating for victims and this case is no different. The victim remains incredibly distressed by the actions of Shuaib Muhammad, to the point where she no longer wishes to remain in her home where the offences took place.

has been show how Muhammad that trust increasingly ways Wardlaw "I sincerely hope that she is able to take a measure of comfort from the sentence."

of clothing from did so for the masturbation in a with subjected number of "The effects of can be and this The incredibly the that take comfort The CPS has been able to show how Muhammad violated that trust in increasingly sinister ways Kevin Wardlaw

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Shuaib Muhammad was jailed for two and a half years for stalking
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Feb 17, 2018
Words:863
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