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Inverness Sheriff Court hears man stole brand new £40,000 Jag from city dealership

By Ali Morrison

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A MAN who stole a brand new £40,000 Jaguar from an Inverness garage forecourt to get home to Birmingham was jailed for eight months today. (Wednesday)

Naveed Nawaz (26) drove away from Park's of Hamilton's showroom on Harbour Road on October 8, Inverness Sheriff Court was told.

And only days before that audacious theft, it was heard he had twice crashed his own 11-year-old car on north roads. He careered into a ditch in Sutherland then left the road and collided with a house conservatory in Caithness.

Sheriff Ian Crucikshank said first offender Nawaz had committed "an astounding and incredible course of criminal conduct in a matter of days."

He asked defence solicitor Neil Wilson: "It seems an inept attempt to take a £40,000 car to get home to Birmingham, and he has no explanation why he was in Sutherland and Caithness. Was he trying to do the North Coast 500?"

Mr Wilson could offer no answer other than his client had no money when he was released by police after stealing the Jag.

Sheriff Ian Cruickshank.
Sheriff Ian Cruickshank.

The engine of the luxury car had been left running in the forecourt to update its navigation system, and Nawaz leapt in and drove off. He was caught by police a short time later near Moy.

Mr Wilson said Nawaz was released on an undertaking to appear at Inverness at a later date and was trying to get home to Washwood Heath Road in Birmingham by train.

Mr Wilson said: "When he saw police, he panicked and ran away."

The court heard officers found him hiding in a carriage. He was again released.

Mr Wilson added: "He failed to turn up twice at Inverness Sheriff Court in November to answer the undertaking, a warrant was issued and he was arrested in Glasgow on December 7."

Mr Wilson added that Nawaz had committed other road traffic offences in Edinburgh in November and had since been placed on a community payback order for 200 hours of unpaid work.

Fiscal depute Roderick Urquhart told the court that on October 2, Nawaz drove at 90pmph on a single track road near Colaball Farm, Lairg, lost control of his car and ended up in a ditch.

Three days later, in the small rural hamlet of Haster on October 5, Nawaz drove at excessive speed, causing him to lose control and hit the conservatory.

Nawaz admitted theft of a car, failing to identify the driver to police when he was intercepted at Moy and driving the unregistered Jag without insurance.

He also admitted two charges of careless driving, failing to identify the driver of the vehicle involved in the collisions and trespassing onto a railway line near Inverness on October 9.

Sheriff Cruickshank backdated the custodial sentence to December 8, and also banned him from driving for 16 months.

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