A Pakistani student who tried to rape a lone woman after dragging her into an alley has been jailed for six years.
Business studies student Ali Mustafa, 21, stalked his victim after spotting her walking along Batty Street, Whitechapel, in the early hours of a Sunday morning.
After Mustafa asked for her mobile phone number, his 24-year-old victim tried to shake him off by seeking refuge in a nearby convenience store at around 3am on June 16 this year.
But he waited outside, following her along The Highway in Shadwell before pulling her by the arm into an alley. He then sexually assaulted her, causing her to fall to the ground, where he tried to rape her.
The screaming woman managed to fight him off, but her attacker stole her mobile phone before fleeing the scene.
His traumatised victim was found by a passer-by who stayed with her until police arrived. Mustafa was arrested at his home in Pinchin Street, Shadwell the next day, where police found the stolen phone hidden beneath his pillow.
Det Con Spencer White, of the Metropolitan Police, said: “Mustafa clearly targeted the victim as he knew she was alone, and he thought she was more vulnerable to attack.
“I would like to pay testimony to the bravery that the victim has shown, and her strength in supporting the prosecution that has led to Mustafa being sent to prison today.”
Mustafa was jailed for six years at a sentencing at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Friday, having pleaded guilty to attempted rape, sexual assault and theft at an earlier hearing.