NHS analyst, 25, jailed after leaving man permanently disabled when his BMW ploughed into him during evening walk in Bradford

A Bradford councillor who attended the scene of crash involving a speeding car and a pedestrian later discovered that the seriously injured man was his own elderly father.

Ashfaq Valli

Unsuspecting Mohammed Azam, 71, was struck from behind by Ashfaq Valli’s out of control BMW as he was taking an evening walk along Horton Park Avenue in the city last September.

Today a judge was shown the shocking CCTV footage which captured the moment the BMW mounted the pavement at the junction with Cecil Avenue and launched Mr Azam into the air and over a wall into bushes.

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Bradford Crown Court heard that BMW had been driving dangerously minutes earlier when a marked police car had had to pull over to avoid a collision and the driver had flashed her lights at Valli.

Prosecutor Abdul Shakoor said Valli continued to drive at speed and when the car hit Mr Azam he was launched into the air before landing on a wall and ending up in the bushes.

When police officers arrived on the scene they were initially unaware that a pedestrian had been struck by Valli’s car which had stopped at the scene.

Mr Shakoor said Valli gave conflicting accounts suggesting he had taken the corner “too quick” and had hit the wall.

Despite a shoe being found at the scene Valli, who had two passengers in the car, said he hadn’t hit anybody and it took five minutes before one of the officers found the injured Mr Azam in the garden.

Mr Azam was taken to Leeds General Infirmary were he was put into an induced coma after suffering a fractured spine, a spinal cord injury and multiple rib fractures.

Mr Shakoor said the victim also suffered a bleed on the brain.

Coun Nawaz Azam described in a victim impact statement on behalf of his father how he had gone to the scene of the collision that evening and was told that it looked “bleak” for the injured man.

It was only when he got a call from his family home saying that police officers were there did he realise the man who had been put into the ambulance was his own father.

He described the incident as a nightmare and said his father, who is now paralysed from the waist down, only came home from hospital in January this year.

His father, who had walked regularly and was an active and fit man, now had to be moved by a hoist and needed 24/7 care.

He said the “thoughtless, reckless driving” of Valli had had a devastating impact on the whole family and it all could have been avoided.

Valli, 25, of Lemon Street, Bradford, pleaded guilty to a charge of causing serious injury by dangerous driving which carries a maximum prison sentence of five years in jail.

Today Judge David Hatton QC said a prison sentence was inevitable, but he had to reduce the four-year term to 32 months to take account of Valli’s early guilty plea at the magistrates court.

The court heard that Valli, who was employed by as an IT analyst for the NHS, had no previous convictions and Judge Hatton said it was tragic case for both him and his victim.

But he said Valli had embarked on a course of dangerous driving which had involved driving on the wrong side of the road and driving a speed in a 30mph zone.

The judge said Mr Azam had suffered initially life-threatening, but ultimately life-changing and catastrophic injury in the collision.

Barrister Samreen Akhtar, for Valli, said he had expressed remorse over the incident and had written letters of apology.

She said Valli had described it as “a stupid momentary loss of control”.

Judge Hatton banned Valli from driving for four years and four months and ordered him to take an extended re-test at the end of the disqualification period.