A pair of boy racers have been slapped with fines totalling more than £6,000 after they took part in an illegal car cruise – breaking a High Court injunction that has already snared 40 reckless drivers.
Jordan Evans, of Lakeside Close, Willenhall, and Jack Buchanan, of Harthill Road, Wolverhampton, admitted taking part in the Bilston cruise during the early hours of Sunday, March 10.
A nearby resident reported hearing loud engine noises and witnessed a number of vehicles racing along Springvale Avenue, two-by-two, for approximately 15 minutes.
Evans, aged 23, and 21-year-old Buchanan had previously denied breaching the injunction but changed their pleas earlier this month and appeared at the High Court on Monday, January 21, for sentencing.
Jordan was fined £1,000 and Jack £1,250, with both ordered to pay costs of £2,000 each. An application to commit a third defendant was dismissed.
His Honour Judge McKenna, sitting as a High Court judge, said: “Car cruising is a serious problem for a number of local authorities in the Midlands, and the seriousness of the conduct alleged against the two respondents should not be underestimated.
“In each case I bear in mind it is a first breach, and I am satisfied that there will be no repetition of the behaviour which took place on 10 March last year.”
The successful prosecution follows the ground-breaking injunction, granted by the High Court in 2014, which bans people from taking part in a car cruise anywhere within Wolverhampton, Dudley, Sandwell or Walsall, or from promoting, organising or publicising any such event in the same area.
The court heard that Springvale Avenue is a known hotspot for car cruising, with five individuals pleading guilty in November to participating in a cruise there on Saturday, March 17, which was reported to police by the same witness.
The yobs received sentences ranging from a suspended jail sentence to fines, while all five were ordered to pay costs.
Both cases were brought by the City of Wolverhampton Council which, together with Dudley, Sandwell and Walsall councils and West Midlands Police, secured the injunction which came into force in February 2015.
Councillor Hazel Malcolm, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “Street racing is completely unacceptable and, once again, the authorities have demonstrated a zero tolerance to car cruising.
“The activities are not only illegal but also dangerous, putting the safety of participants and spectators at risk. It is also anti-social, generating late-night noise nuisance and disturbances for people living near to car cruising hotspots.”
Councillor Val Gibson, Cabinet Member for Governance, added: “People who think about taking part in a car cruise in the Black Country – whether as a driver, passenger or even spectator – will be in breach of the High Court injunction and should be very clear about the likely consequences. The same applies to people who either organise a car cruise or actively promote it.”
Nearly 40 individuals have now been found to be in breach of the injunction. They have received sentences ranging from three months imprisonment to suspended jail sentences and fines of up to £2,000, as well as being ordered to pay costs. People who breach the injunction can also face having assets – such as vehicles – seized and crushed.
For more information, please visit their website here . Incidents of car cruising should be reported to West Midlands Police on 101. In an emergency, always dial 999.
West Midlands Police have also issued a stark warning to car cruisers across the West Midlands and are now using drones to gather evidence .
During a blitz in October last year, officers dispersed groups of up to 100 cars, recovered two stolen vehicles and arrested a 21-year-old man for breaching the High Court injunction in Solihull.
Details of numerous other cars thought to be involved were collated and warning letters were sent out.
Superintendent Ian Green, from Birmingham Police, said: “There is a huge amount of work going on to tackle this issue as we know many people are concerned about anti-social and dangerous activity.
Watch: ‘Car cruiser’ jailed for 90mph Birmingham street race:
“Our traffic officers and others carry out regular operations like this one across the force in response to concerns raised by communities. These are also now supported by police drone pilots who gather information on offenders.”
The dangerous driving and excessive noise from car cruising results in a number of calls to police and officers are developing a number of plans to prosecute offenders.
Superintendent Ian Green added: “It’s all part of our ongoing commitment to listen to what our communities are telling us they are concerned about and taking action against offenders.
“Operations like this should act as a stark warning to any motorist who thinks they can drive dangerously or anti-socially on our roads.
“We won’t tolerate this behaviour. We’re determined to bring offenders to justice and keep our roads safe.”
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