AFTER one of his friends had taken his father’s car and crashed it, a university student hatched a plot to get another friend to take the blame.
And now, instead of starting the second year of his degree course, Abelaziz Ahmed and the friend who claimed to have taken the BMW are both starting eight-month prison sentences.
Both men had pleaded guilty at Warwick Crown Court to separate charges of acts intended to pervert the course of justice.
Ahmed (20) of Station Street East, Coventry, and Khalid Issa (25) of Cross Road, Foleshill, Coventry, who also admitted a charge of aggravated vehicle-taking by being carried in a car taken without consent, were also both disqualified for 28 months.
The court heard that on December 3 last year another young man, Mohammed Abduwali, was driving Ahmed’s father’s BMW, which had been taken without his consent.
Then, with Issa in the passenger seat, Abduwali crashed it into two Vauxhall Corsas, damaging all three cars.
Told of the crash, Ahmed came up with an account to the police that a friend who had been at his house, had simply got into his father’s car and driven off in it, without permission.
He did not name that friend, and the next day he and Issa went to the police station, where Issa falsely claimed he had been behind the wheel.
But when officers spoke to Ahmed again three days later, he admitted he had not given a truthful account. In a later interview, Issa maintained he had been driving.
That interview was ended for him to speak to his lawyer, and when a second one began, he admitted he had lied, and that he had been offered money to take the blame, adding the plan had been hatched by Ahmed.
Abduwali (21) of Gilbert Close, Coventry, was questioned and admitted being the driver, the court heard.
Following legal discussions, it was agreed he could not be dealt with in the crown court because there was no evidence that the crash had caused more than £5,000 worth of damage – which meant his case should have remained in the magistrates’ court.
Siobhan Collins, for Issa, who had a caution for an attempted shop robbery, and was the victim of an attack last year when he was stabbed to the leg, argued for a suspended sentence. He added: “While this is a serious offence, this is his first conviction. He is described as naïve and immature.
Graeme Simpson, for Ahmed, said of the Wolverhampton University student: “This was both foolish and naïve, but while the police were inconvenienced for three days, no innocent person was arrested or detained as a result.”
Jailing the two, Judge Andrew Lockhart QC told them: “These are serious matters. A plan was hatched and maintained. The Court of Appeal has said time without number, that for offences such as this, custodial sentences can and will be passed.”