This morning police received a report that Fatima al-Bareen (34) had been abducted by a stranger at Heathrow Airport.
Having arrived on a flight from Algeria the same morning, the woman was waiting for her father to pick her up outside the arrivals hall at Terminal 3 when a stranger in a white Mercedes stopped in front of her. The man rolled down the window and shouted “Get in! I haven’t got all day!”.
Confused and frightened, and worried the man would turn violent if she refused, Fatima al-Bareen did as the man said and entered the back seat of the car. Once inside the car, the driver took off at high speed.
“I was terrified”, Fatima told our reporter later. “I thought this was the end of my life. The man drove like crazy. The car was filled with thick cigarette smoke. The driver played Lebanese pop music so loud it was impossible to say anything. And I was too afraid to speak anyway.”
“Luckily I had my phone with me. Hiding it under my burka I typed a message to my sister in Luton, telling her to call the police.”“We received a call at 9.13 am saying that a woman had been kidnapped at Heathrow and was being held against her will heading north from the airport in car,” police spokesman John Piller told media. “From the description it was an old white Mercedes-Benz with one man driving at high speed and one woman in a black burka in the back seat.”
“We immediately alterted our units in the area. At 9.37 am a car fitting the description was spotted on the outer ring road and stopped by one of our units. The driver initially claimed the woman was his wife. However, further inquiry showed he had picked up the wrong wife. His wife was still waiting at Heathrow, while the woman in the car was someone else.”
“Since the female victim did not want to report the man, and since she appeared to be unharmed if understandably shaken by the incident, we let the driver go with a warning that he should look more carefully next time.”