A married man who lured two women into his car and molested them under the guise of being a late-night Uber driver has confessed to his crimes in court.
Kais Dahdal, who has never held a licence to drive, let alone worked as an Uber contractor, used his wife's car to cruise the streets of the Wollongong CBD across a Friday and Saturday night in October last year, searching for potential targets.
His first victim was a woman who was looking for a ride home after leaving The Illawarra with a friend just after 1.30am.
Documents tendered to Wollongong Local Court said the woman tried to order an Uber for her and her friend but had been signed out of her account and could not complete the transaction.
She told police Dahdal pulled up in front of the pair a couple of minutes later and asked them if they wanted a ride, telling them he was an Uber but his app wasn't working.
The pair got into the vehicle - the victim in the front seat and her friend in a rear seat.
Dahdal dropped the friend off at her house, then asked the victim for her address.
The woman replied "it's really close by, just up there", but Dahdal started driving in the wrong direction.
When the woman tried to correct him, Dahdal pulled a cigarette out and lit it, then reached over and squeezed the woman on the upper right thigh and kissed her on the lips.
The woman pulled away, terrified, as Dahdal said "want to have some fun? Want to f--k?"
The woman said "no, no, I really need to get home, my boyfriend is waiting for me".
She asked Dahdal to drop her off in the middle of her street, later telling police she threw some cash at him and jumped out of the car as quickly as she could.
She then messaged a group of friends about her ordeal.
"The Uber that me and my friend [name redacted] got was f--ked," she wrote.
"He kissed me and asked me if I wanted to f--k. Omg I was scared for my life."
The incident was reported to police.
Meanwhile, Dahdal struck again in identical fashion the next night, again claiming his app was broken.
The court heard the victim got into the back seat of Dahdal's vehicle just after 2.30am and he began driving her home, however he soon asked her to move into the front seat, claiming he couldn't hear her directions.
As they approached the woman's street, Dahdal said "how are you going to pay me?"
"Through the Uber app," the woman replied.
When Dahdal reminded her the app wasn't working, she grew suspicious and told him "look mate, all I've got on me is $25 cash, that's all I can give you. I'm more than happy to transfer you money if I have to."
He took the $25 but insisted she still owed him more for the fare.
"You could pay me in other ways, you can pay me in sex," Dahdal told her.
The woman immediately told Dahdal to pull over and jumped out of the car.
Dahdal drove off and the woman ran to her home.
She contacted her mother and a friend to tell them both what had happened, before reporting the incident to police.
Officers launched an investigation, reviewing CCTV footage from the CBD, which showed both victims entering Dahdal's vehicle on the consecutive nights.
Police arrested Dahdal the following day at his unit on Hercules Street.
He was charged and granted conditional bail at the time.
Dahdal pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual touching without consent and one count of driving without ever having held a licence during a recent court appearance.
He will remain on bail ahead of his sentencing on July 18.
Read more Illawarra court and crime stories here.
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