Rahema Ibrahim sent back to prison after 13 years on the run
A convicted armed robber on day release from jail went to see her mum before fleeing to Rotterdam – and remained at large for 13 years.
Rahema Ibrahim, 34, was nine months into a 54 month sentence for robbery and two counts of possessing an offensive weapon when she escaped East Sutton Park Women’s Prison in Maidstone in February 2005.
It was her fifth time on day release when she spontaneously decided to flee to her mum’s house.
Surprised when no-one came to take her back to prison, Ibrahim fled to Rotterdam where she started working in hotels and began a relationship.
She returned to the UK and got a job in Pret a Manger before finally being arrested in December after she was involved in a fight and ended up in hospital with a broken nose.
Nana Owusuh, prosecuting, said: “In 2005 the defendant was serving a sentence for a robbery offence together with possession of an offensive weapon times two.
“As part of that sentence she was already out on day release and from what I can make out on 8 February she did not return.
“She was not arrested until December 29, 2017 following what appears to be a violent offence of affray.
“It was suspected that she had a broken nose and was found with a small amount of cannabis.
“That was not proceeded with and when she was discharged from hospital she gave officers full details.
“The length of time that she has been at large is between 12 and 13 years.”
Her counsel told the court that she didn’t think they would check up on her details from 2005.
She pleaded guilty at Inner London Crown Court to being unlawfully at large and was handed a consecutive sentence.
Ibrahim, of Lambeth, south London, is currently back in prison serving the rest of the sentence she received in 2005.
Short haired Ibrahim stood solemnly in a green scarf and black leather jacket as Judge Alexander Leyton QC gave his verdict.
Sophie Chaplin, in mitigation, said: “She came from Somalia following a violent act which led to the death of her uncle.
“After being found guilty by a jury Ms Ibrahim did not agree with the verdict.
“On her way back to the prison she made a spontaneous decision simply not to return, she did not go to any sort of subterfuge and went back home to her mum and thought someone would come for her.
“She was in her early 20s, she went to Rotterdam and started a relationship, she had times of being in work in hotels and in other agency work.
“She was attacked in Rotterdam which resulted in the loss of her child, having been badly assaulted and stabbed.
“Back in this country having ended the relationship in Rotterdam, via an agency she secured accommodation in a hostel, she had secured permanent employment with Pret a Manger and had been with them for around three-and-a-half months when she was arrested.
“Pret were assisting and funding counselling for her and she accepts that she was smoking cannabis and she had been drinking too much.
“She knows that she should have handed herself back in and when she was arrested in December she did not think they were going to check up with what happened in 2005. ”
Judge Alexander Leyton QC handed Ibrahim six months behind bars to run consecutively with the rest of her original 54 month sentence she is currently serving.
He said: “In 2005 you were convicted after a trial of robbery and two offences of possessing an offensive weapon at Blackfriars Crown Court and you were sentenced to 54 months, four-and-a-half years.
“Some nine or 10 months later on day release, your fourth or fifth time on day release, you decided not to return to prison as you were supposed to.
“You will serve six months it will be consecutive to the sentence that you are serving from the conviction in 2005.”
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