Laser endangered police helicopter: Forest Gate man jailed

A laser lout was jailed for six months last week after he was caught shining a light beam into the cockpit of a police helicopter.

Azeem Kara, 22, stood outside his home dazzling the pilot and risking sending the aircraft crashing to the ground.

But the crew were able to immediately locate Kara with their hi-tech equipment and called in back up, Inner London Crown Court heard.

Kara, who has a previous conviction for racially aggravated assault and others for motoring offences, claimed he was testing the “novelty item” when he could not sleep at his home in Belton Road, Forest Gate.

Gregor McKinley, prosecuting, said: ‘On June 26 2011 police were on routine patrol in a police helicopter in the E7 area, when they describe a green laser light shining into the cockpit.


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‘One of the police observers said it can blind effectively the pilot of a helicopter, causing distraction to the flight pilot with obvious risk of danger to the occupants and those below.”

Bharat Gupta, defending, said Kara did not realise the beam had hit the craft. “He has been reckless but he hasn’t done it with any malicious intent. It was just a novelty item,” he said.

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Kara admitted recklessly acting in a manner likely to endanger an aircraft or persons.

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