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Deliveroo rider attacked by mask-wearing robbers in Hackney Downs warns others to stay safe

PUBLISHED: 10:36 02 March 2018 | UPDATED: 13:53 02 March 2018

A file image of a Deliveroo driver. Picture: Kevin Jones (CC BY 2.0)

A file image of a Deliveroo driver. Picture: Kevin Jones (CC BY 2.0)

Archant

A newly-hired Deliveroo driver attacked by a bunch of knife-wielding would-be robbers in Lower Clapton has spoken out to warn others.

A file image of a Deliveroo package. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA ArchiveA file image of a Deliveroo package. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA Archive

Filmon Yohannes, 33, from Arcola Street in Dalston, was driving along Downs Road on his scooter on February 11 when the gang – thought to be aged in their late teens to their mid-20s – came out of the park.

He believes the group used the zebra crossing to slow him down before attacking him with “all sorts of weapons” all over his body.

“I tried to pick up the pace, but they started to hit me and kick me saying: ‘Get off the bike.’ Somehow – I can’t believe how it happened – but I managed to force my way through them.

“They smashed my mufflers, which I use to protect my hands. They were trying to grab my hand but it was inside the muffler so they couldn’t overpower me. They hit me on the back and neck.

“It was a full on attack, in the middle of the night, there was nobody out there. As far as I’m concerned they were trying to kill me. If I hadn’t won I would have been really endangering my life.

“At least one of them had something in his hand that looked like a knife.”

"It was a full on attack, in the middle of the night, there was nobody out there. As far as I’m concerned they were trying to kill me."

Filmon Yohannes

In July the Gazette revealed how Deliveroo drivers were being run off the road by knife-wielding moped thieves in a terrifying crimewave.

Luckily Filmon, who had only been working for Deliveroo for three weeks, wasn’t badly injured.

It was only when he phoned Deliveroo about the attack that he realised he wasn’t the only victim.

He says he will now refuse to work after 9pm, which is when he believes most of the robberies take place. He was attacked just before 11pm.

Deliveroo provides the police with quarterly updates on which areas its riders have reported attacks, but would not share this data with the Gazette. The company has been trialling the use of helmet-mounted cameras so if riders are attacked they can pass footage to the police.

“These are free for riders in Hackney and we will be in touch with this rider to ensure he is aware of this and give him a helmet,” said a spokesman. “Rider safety is an absolute priority for Deliveroo. We employ teams especially to ensure riders ride safely.

Filmon YohannesFilmon Yohannes

“And we are clear that no rider should ride in an area where they feel unsafe.”

Police confirmed Filmon had reported the attack, but said after reviewing CCTV there was insufficient evidence. No one has been arrested.

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