FOUR Sheffield men have been locked up for causing a fatal smash which killed their friend as they raced each other up the M1 at speeds of up to 95mph, writes Polly Rippon.
Muhammed Ali Hassan, aged 18, from Sheffield, died after the multiple-car collision near junction 39 of the M1 near Wakefield in August 2011.
After the crash some of the defendants fled the scene, while others lied to the police about how it happened.
The motorway was shut for nine hours as police carried out a forensic examination and the vehicles were recovered, leaving motorists stranded for several hours.
Leeds Crown Court heard the four were among eight men driving in a convoy of cars - a white Audi, a green Honda Civic, a yellow Honda Civic, a Blue Ford Fiesta and a black Astra.
They were heading to West Yorkshire from Sheffield, celebrating the end of Eid, when the horror smash happened.
Muhammed was airlifted to hospital following the crash at 6.40pm but died of his injuries. A CPS spokeswoman said: “The vehicles were driving in convoy and racing. They were caught on camera doing speeds of up to 95mph.
“One witness described them ‘coming out of nowhere’ and ‘driving as if there was no other traffic on the road’.”
DS Carole Greaves of West Yorkshire Police’s Major Collision Enquiry Team said: “This terrible collision happened when the dangerous and irresponsible driving of the defendants turned what should have been a day of celebrating into a disaster.
“Vehicles carrying a group of friends were involved in the collision, which would not have happened had the defendants not been speeding and performing dangerous manoeuvres on a very busy stretch of motorway at a peak time of day.
“While it is extremely sad the collision led to the death of Muhammed Hassan, it was actually a miracle no-one else died.”
She added: “These defendants must deal with the sentences they have received while continuing to mourn the death of their friend in what were entirely avoidable circumstances.”
Mohammed Abdulla, 19, of Colver Road, Lowfield, was sent to a young offenders’ institution for four years after admitting causing death by dangerous driving.
Emdadur Rahman, 20, of Raleigh Road, Heeley, was given three years and nine months, while Nabeel Ahmed, 19, of Kenbourne Road, Nether Edge, was given three years and six months after they each admitted the same offence.
Yaseen Fiaz, 19, of Archibald Road, Nether Edge, was given six months in a young offenders’ institution after he admitted dangerous driving and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
All four were banned from driving and told they must not get behind the wheel until they retake their tests.
Zafeer Abdul, 20, of Wolseley Road, Sharrow, was given a nine month prison term suspended for two years and told he must carry out 200 hours unpaid work, after he admitted dangerous driving.
Muzammel Ahmed, 19, of St Barnabas Road, Highfield, was given a nine month jail term, suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.
Monwar Hussain, 20, of South View Road, Sharrow, also admitted perverting the course of the justice was given the same sentence, while Imranur Rahman, 18, of Holland Road, Highfield, was given a 12 month community order and 200 hours of unpaid work for perverting the course of justice.
The family liaison officer dealing with the case initially was PC Mark Goodlad. But the West Yorkshire Police officer, from Goole, was tragically killed just two months later on the M1 near Dewsbury after he stopped to help a female motorist with a flat tyre and was struck by a lorry which veered onto the hard shoulder.