Two men jailed for stolen car and shotgun - Farley Hill

05/05/2017

Two Luton men were jailed for a total of more than 10 years today, Friday, 5 May 2017, after driving around Farley Hill in a stolen car with a sawn off shotgun inside.

Irfan Khan, aged 23, was sentenced to five and a half years, and Nadeem Niaz, also aged 23, was sentenced to five years when they appeared at Luton Crown Court via a video link from Bedford jail.

Prosecutor Alison Ginn said the Peugeot had been stolen from Slip End at the end of October last year. It belonged to a man who was suffering from terminal cancer. He left his door unlocked in case of an emergency and the thief had gone into his kitchen and stolen the car key from a hook.

Then, on 1 November at 5.15 in the morning, the Peugeot pulled out in front of a police car in Whipperley Ring. The police activated their blue lights, but Niaz did not stop. He swerved onto the wrong side of the road along Cades Lane, before travelling into Clarence Gardens at speed, with the exhaust giving off sparks as it struck the tarmac. Ms Ginn said Niaz drove into Farley Meadows, a dead end. Three men jumped out and the Peugeot rolled to a halt in bushes.

Irfan Khan, who was drunk, fell over and was arrested. His eyes were glazed. In his trial, he told the jury he had downed two half bottles of vodka. He said he was the front seat passenger and named Niaz as the driver. Niaz was arrested later, said the prosecutor.

When the police looked inside the Peugeot, they found the sawn off shotgun with a cartridge.

Niaz of Priestley, Luton, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to possessing a prohibited firearm and aggravated vehicle taking. Khan of Lachbury Close, Luton was found guilty, by a jury, of the same charges. Khan had three previous convictions and Niaz had eight.

Andrew Selby, for Khan, said he was very drunk. He said he suffered from a hereditary skin condition and was the carer for his parents.

David Healey, for Niaz, said his client was still a young man who recognised that he faced a minimum five years sentence because of the gun charge. In his basis of plea, Niaz said someone had given him the car with the gun in it.

In addition to the custodial sentences, the Judge banned Niaz from driving for two years from when he is released from prison. He must also take an extended re-test. Khan was also banned from driving for a year from when he is released.

The Judge told them: "The truth about what happened that night has plainly not come out." He said Niaz's basis of plea was ludicrous. "Nobody who has a sawn off shotgun is going to leave it in a car and give it to someone else to drive around."

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