AN UBER Eats delivery driver who carried out two separate sex attacks on 15-year-old girls after following them in Newport city centre has been jailed.

“Predator” Vasilica Solomon, 22, terrified his two victims with a judge telling him they were justified in believing he might have wanted to rape them.

The defendant was classed as a dangerous offender who poses a serious risk to young women as he was handed an extended jail sentence.


The assaults happened in isolated spots at night and within seven days of each other last month, prosecutor Jason Howells said.

The first occurred on a riverside path near the bus depot on Corporation Road on the evening of January 14.

Mr Howells said: “The victim noticed a shadow on the floor and realised someone was trying to creep up on her.

“She then felt her leggings being pulled down. She managed to pull them back up but fell over. She was scared and in a complete panic and feared she might be raped.

“She kicked out at him, causing him to stumble backwards before he ran off.”

The second attack happened on January 21 on a girl wearing her school uniform after Solomon had followed her along the railway bridge near the site of the former Engineers Arms pub in Baneswell.

Mr Howells told Newport Crown Court: “Her initial fear was that she might be the subject of a robbery and she quickened her pace.

“The defendant lifted the back of her school skirt and touched her bottom.”

He said the girl turned around to confront Solomon who again ran away.

The court was told how police traced the defendant through his car which he had parked in the area of both attacks.

They discovered he had swapped his Uber Eats jacket for a less conspicuous coat before committing his crimes.

Romanian national Solomon, of Liscombe Street, Newport, pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault.

Mr Howells said that when detectives interviewed the defendant: “He admitted using cannabis and he said that it made him lose self-control, go off the rails and that it gave him sexual urges.”

He also told the police his wife lived in another city and how he wanted to return to his native Romania.

Peter Donnison, representing Solomon, who is a young father with a daughter, said: “These are serious offences which inevitably have a devastating impact upon the victims.”

He told the court that his client had admitted the offences and had no previous convictions.

Judge Richard Williams told Solomon: “You terrified both of your victims. Both were justifiably afraid that you might rape them.

“Neither has been able to come to terms with what you did. The what ifs of what you might have done must be agonising for both of the girls and for those who love and care for them.

“You are clearly a predator. You must be regarded as dangerous.”

Judge Williams jailed Solomon for eight years, made up of a six-year custodial term and a two-year extended sentence on licence.

The defendant wept as he was led away to the cells.

He must also register as sex offender and was made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order, both for indefinite periods.

The judge commended both victims for their courage and added: “I wish to pay tribute to the both of them for the tremendous strength of character they have shown and I hope they accept the love and support of their families.”

Speaking outside the court, Detective Constable John-Paul Velasquez-Cripps, Gwent Police's officer in the case, said: “We welcome the sentence imposed on Vasilica Solomon which reflects the seriousness of his offending.

“I would like to commend the victims for their remarkable strength in coming forward. It is because of their courage that a dangerous offender is now off the streets.

“I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to come forward to report such appalling crimes but I want to reassure anyone considering doing so that there is a whole range of support out there, not only from the police but from partner agencies who can help you through the entire process.

"If you have been sexually assaulted or someone you know has, we would urge you to seek support and report it to us.

“You can do so by calling 101 or report to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. For advice and support you can contact Connect Gwent the victims’ hub on 0300 123 2133 or visit In an emergency you should always dial 999.”