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Taxi driver faces second sex-assault charge against female passenger

A Halifax cab driver has been ordered off the road after being chargedtwice in as many months with sexual assault against a female passenger.

A Halifax cab driver has been ordered off the road after being charged twice in as many months with sexual assault against a female passenger.

Halifax Regional Police say Ravinder Pal Arora, 50, is facing one count of sexual assault in connection with an alleged incident Sunday morning in Halifax.

According to police spokesman Brian Palmeter, a 22-year-old woman phoned police around 8:50 a.m. to report a cabbie had touched her in a sexual manner as she sat in the front seat of his vehicle.

“She got out almost right away once the cab stopped,” Palmeter said. “She was able to provide excellent description of the driver, the vehicle, the company ... and that ultimately led to the quick identification and arrest in this matter.”

Palmeter wouldn’t disclose the name of the cab company or the exact pick-up or drop-off location, but confirmed the victim was travelling from one point to another on the Halifax peninsula.

Arora was previously arrested and charged in December in connection with a “similar” alleged incident involving a female passenger, Palmeter said. At the time, police didn’t release details of the alleged assault to the media.

Shelley Rose, a 31-year-old resident of HRM, said she feels that was a mistake.

“That, to me, isn’t fair,” said Rose, who works downtown and takes cabs regularly. “They should divulge that information.”

Palmeter explained police generally don’t release information related to sexual assault charges unless there is a significant risk to the public.

“Where now we’ve got what we believe is a second incident ... it elevates it to where we believe the public is a little more at risk,” he said, adding reports of sexual assaults involving cab drivers are quite rare.

“This is a serious incident, but most cab drivers take a lot of pride in what they do in providing good, safe transportation.”

Released
Ravinder Pal Arora, 50, has been released on conditions, including he not operate a taxi, and is scheduled to appear in Halifax Provincial Court on March 2.