A DANGEROUS driver who sped through a residential area of Nelson trying to get away from the police, clocked up his 10th conviction for banned driving, a court heard.

Atif Mahmood, 34, had been spotted by officers, who knew he was disqualified, on a street where young children were playing and an ice cream van had stopped, in the middle of the afternoon. He made off and reached about 60 mph in 30 mph zones as he weaved his way around the streets.

The defendant finally abandoned his Vauxhall Vectra and again tried to get away when police turned up at a house to arrest him the next day.

Burnley Crown Court was told how Mahmood had three previous convictions for dangerous driving, nine for driving while disqualified, one for driving without due care and attention and two for driving with excess alcohol, dating from 1998 onwards. He had been bailed after the incident last June 18, had then got behind the wheel again and had been locked up for 56 days.

Mahmood is now starting a 17-month jail term, after a judge said short sentences had not worked.

The defendant, of Barkerhouse Road, Nelson, had admitted dangerous driving on Priory Street, Fulham Street, Back Leeds Road and Bradley Hall Road, Nelson, driving while banned and no insurance. He was disqualified for three years and must take an extended driving test.

Sentencing, Judge Beverley Lunt said Mahmood had an ‘absolutely dreadful’ record for driving offences.

She continued: “You obviously presented a real danger to other road users and pedestrians.”