May 25 2013 Latest news:
, News Editor
Friday, May 25, 2012
A speeding driver who ignored screams from his passengers as he mowed down and killed a pedestrian was jailed for three years.
Hasnam Iqbal, 22, from Manor Park, was hurtling along at more than 50mph in a 30mph zone when he struck Pelistan David, killing him instantly.
Iqbal swerved onto the wrong side of the road as he approached a zebra crossing in High Street North, East Ham, forcing oncoming vehicles to take evasive action.
Dazzled by the headlights of another vehicle, he ploughed into Mr David before his uninsured Volkswagen Golf collided head-on with another car.
The driver, 90-year-old Reginald Charles, suffered broken ribs, a broken collar bone and damage to his kidneys, following the smash on January 29 last year, which sent his vehicle careering into another BMW.
Sentencing Iqbal at Inner London Crown Court, Judge Ian Darling said: “It was a dreadful piece of driving that had devastating consequences to many people, including leaving behind a 24-year-old widow in Sri Lanka and a grieving brother and sister-in-law. No amount of imprisonment could ever console them.”
Iqbal had borrowed the car from a friend and picked up three passengers just before 11pm to visit a takeaway, said prosecutor Lee Ingham.
“The passengers described his driving a relatively normal until they reached High Street North,” he said.
“Then he started revving the engine and speeding up to the point that the passengers began to be worried. The passenger in the front screamed to him to slow down.”
As Iqbal sped along on the wrong side of the road, the driver of an oncoming Ford Galaxy had to swerve to avoid a head-on collision.
It was at this point that Mr David and a friend left a take away shop and started to cross the road
“Iqbal was possibly distracted or panicked by having seen the oncoming head lights of the Galaxy,” said Mr Ingham.
“He continued on the road primarily on the wrong side of the carriageway, and as he did so, he struck Mr David.
“It is likely that he died more or less instantly fortunately.”
Iqbal broke his own leg in the smash, and one of his passengers had to have the top of his middle finger amputated after his hand was badly injured.
Ronald Jaffa, defending, said Iqbal had deep remorse for what had happened.
Reading a letter to the court from Iqbal he said: “I feel immeasurable sorrow for the family of the deceased.”
He said his time in hospital he had time to reflect on “my stupidity and the heartbreak the family must be feeling”, adding “I have nightmares and flashbacks.”
Iqbal of Meanley Road, had previously pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving and driving without insurance.