Nelson driver banned nine times

Atif Mahmood
Atif Mahmood

A Nelson man who was disqualified from driving panicked when he was spotted behind the wheel of his Vauxhall Vectra and drove off at speed, a court was told.

Atif Mahmood (34), of Bankhouse Road, drove at between 55 and 60 mph on Priory Street, Fulham Street and Bradley Hall Road – three streets with 30 mph speed limits – before abandoning the car.

But he was arrested the next day – and Burnley Crown Court was told he had been banned from driving on nine occasions in the past.

Mahmood admitted dangerous driving, driving without insurance and driving while disqualified and was sent to jail for 17 months and banned from driving for three years.

The court heard police were on duty in Priory Street in June last year when they spotted Mahmood, who they knew, driving the car past an ice cream van.

He spotted the officers, who were sitting in an unmarked car, and drove off at speed.

For Mahmood, the court was told his driving had caused no injuries or damage to other vehicles and there was no suggestion that other road users had been put at risk.

But Judge Beverly Lunt said he had a “dreadful” record for dangerous driving and previous prison terms imposed had not been a deterrent.

“It is time for these sentences to become significant. You present a real risk to other road users,” she said.

The judge ordered Mahmood to take an extended retest and said the vehicle should be forfeited