herald

Tuesday 25 September 2018

Taximan terror as thugs attack with metal bar

Dublin taxi driver Sylvester Wongbi, from Cameroon, needed 17 stitches to his head wound. Photo: Damien Eagers
Dublin taxi driver Sylvester Wongbi, from Cameroon, needed 17 stitches to his head wound. Photo: Damien Eagers

A 38-year-old taxi driver suffered serious head injuries when he was savagely attacked in the early hours of Thursday in south Dublin.

Father-of-one Sylvester Wongbi (38) told the Herald he is "still deeply traumatised but happy to be alive" after the shocking incident.

It occurred in Ringsend at 12.50am on Thursday, leaving Mr Wongbi needing 17 stitches to the back of his head.

Gardai have recovered the heavy round iron implement used in the assault, and forensic tests have been carried out on it.

THREATENING

Officers in Irishtown are hunting for two men Mr Wongbi picked up outside a hotel in the Pearse Street area only minutes before the attack.

One of the men sat in the front of the taxi while the other sat in the back.

They did not at first seem threatening, but he soon suspected they might not have money to pay the fare. They had asked Mr Wongbi, who is from Cameroon, to drive them to Ringsend.

The assault happened close to a petrol station at Ringsend Road, when the men demanded cash from Wr Wongbi who told them he had none.

It was then that the man sitting in the back struck the terrified driver on the head.

Mr Wongbi, who lives with his family in Balbriggan, north Co Dublin, told the Herald the attack had seriously knocked his confidence.

"I'm still afraid of going out after this and I feel very shaken as well," he said. "Nothing like this has ever happened before. I am lucky to be alive.

"It was a horrific experience. I would like very much that these people are caught."

After his accomplice had assaulted Mr Wongbi, the man in the front of the car jumped out. The attacker fell out of the vehicle as Mr Wongbi drove off.

CAMERAS

He went straight to Irishtown garda station and from there to St Vincent's Hospital.

The attackers were in their late 20s, and both spoke with Dublin accents. Gardai believe they may live in the area.

The attacker was wearing a black jacket and the other man had white runners on.

Officers have taken fingerprints from the victim's car and are also trawling through CCTV footage from cameras in the Ringsend Road area.

kfoy@herald.ie

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