Yorkshire couple spared prison after lying about a speeding offence

A couple have been spared prison after lying about a speeding offence.

Emma Ibbotsen, 39, was found to have told authorities she had been driving the car of her partner, Mohammed Sadiq, 46, when it had been caught speeding last year. Authorities soon discovered that Sadiq, who was working as a taxi driver, had in fact been driving.

A judge in a Leeds Crown Court sentencing hearing took mercy on the pair, however, accepting the lie had been made in desperation to help provide for the couple’s young family. On January 17, 2021, a vehicle registered to Sadiq was snapped by a speed camera in Kirkstall. A request for information was then sent to him, which he sent back claiming his partner, Ibbetson, was driving.

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After an investigation by Leeds City Council and West Yorkshire Police, it was discovered that Sadiq, a taxi driver who already had six points on his licence, was driving at the time. Both Mohammed Sadiq and Emma Ibbetson, of Waterton Grove, Wakefield, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

The hearing took place in Leeds Crown Court.The hearing took place in Leeds Crown Court.
The hearing took place in Leeds Crown Court.

Mitigating for Sadiq, Christopher Dunn told the court that the two had two very young children, adding: "It’s quite clear that this was not done for any other reason than to try and financially protect his family for which he was the only breadwinner.

"His partner has disabilities and he is the registered carer for the children. He has behaved in this way to protect his employment and keep his family unit in tact. His remorse is genuine.”

Mitigating for Ibbetson, Emily Hassell added her client could no longer count on the support of her family, due to their disapproval of her relationship with Sadiq.

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Sentencing the pair, Judge Robin Mairs said such offences would usually result in prison sentences, but found their case to be an exception.

He added: “In both of your cases, there is mitigation. This was done in attempt to keep your family’s finances together. It should not be read into it by anyone that offences like these don’t pass the custody threshold. [There are] exceptional and unusual circumstances in this case.”

He sentenced Sadiq to nine months in prison, suspended for 18 months, as well as 150 hours unpaid work. Ibbetson was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for 18 months.