A MANIAC motorist led police on a high-speed pursuit – reaching speeds of up to 120mph.
Nabaz Ezzat, of New Silksworth, Sunderland, was going so fast in his Nissan Primera he covered the 10 miles between Durham City and Sunderland in under seven minutes.
The dad-of-two was only stopped when he ploughed into a wall and was told his actions could have killed somebody.
He was jailed for eight months and banned from the roads by a crown court judge yesterday.
Durham Crown Court heard how a traffic patrol officer indicated Ezzat to pull over in Claypath but he accelerated away.
Jonathan Walker, prosecuting, said: “Officers gave chase. The Nissan Primera headed towards Sunderland along the A690, reaching speeds of at least 120mph.
“The traffic car was doing 123mph at one point and was not gaining on the Nissan.
“On the outskirts of Sunderland the Nissan drove the wrong way around the roundabout at the Board Inn pub, turning right.
“It crashed into a stone wall in Silksworth Lane.
“The defendant fled from the vehicle and was arrested in a nearby field.”
Ezzat, 30, of The Crescent, New Silksworth, admitted dangerous driving and driving without a licence or insurance on April 6.
Chris Mitford, defending, said in mitigation: “He was in a car borrowed from a friend who had gone on holiday to Iraq, so he panicked at the sight of the police car.
“Mr Ezzat is a man of good character, and previously worked as a bodyguard in Iraq.
“He has been in this country for seven years, and is here legally after being granted asylum.
“He has a partner in Sunderland who has two children by a previous relationship.
“The children regard Mr Ezzat as their father.”
Judge Christopher Prince jailed Ezzat for eight months.
The judge told him: “Had you stopped when you were asked, this would have only been a relatively minor motoring conviction.
“But you did not stop, you drove off at high speed.
“It was just after midnight and there was still traffic on the road.
“Your driving put other road users at risk of serious injury, if not loss of life.”
Ezzat was banned from driving for 12 months, and he must take an extended driving test if he wishes to drive again.
Following the case, Ellen Booth, senior campaigns officer for Brake, the road safety charity, condemned Ezzat’s actions.
She said “Breaking speed limits causes deaths and life-changing injuries that tear families apart and affect whole communities. There is no excuse for driving so fast, putting his life and others at risk.
“All drivers have a responsibility and a choice to ensure they aren’t putting others at risk, by driving slowly, carefully and sticking well within the speed limit.”