HMA v Akib Aslam

At the High Court in Glasgow on 26 April 2016, Lord Boyd of Duncansby sentenced Akib Aslam to five years and eight months imprisonment after the accused pleaded guilty to a hit-and-run assault to severe injury, permanent disfigurement and impairment.

On sentencing, Lord Boyd made the following statement in court:

“Akib Aslam, you have pleaded guilty to offences arising out of you an incident on 25 October 2014 which culminated in you deliberately driving your car at Steven Ballantyne, striking him on the legs causing him to land on the bonnet of the car. You then accelerated away with him on the bonnet swerving violently and causing him to fall off and strike the ground.

I have taken that account from the terms of the charge to which you pleaded guilty. I do that because when you spoke to the social worker, you told him that Mr Ballantyne jumped onto the bonnet of your car at slow speed and all you did was to put on the brakes at which point he fell off. That was an obvious lie which you apparently now accept.

The injuries that you caused Steven Ballantyne are extremely serious. They are described in both the narrative and in moving detail in the victim impact statement which I read. I hope you have read it too.

The injuries are both physical and mental. The injuries to his legs in particular were extensive. He has required numerous operations.

He was unable to walk for some three to four months. He still suffers both with both mental and physical problems. The injuries he sustained have changed the course of his life and those around him.

I note that you consider that Mr Ballantyne has been deliberately exaggerating the extent of his injuries. That comment merely underlines your callous disregard of the consequences of your actions.

I have listened carefully to what has been said on your behalf. I accept that you come across as an immature young man who for some reason began offending in 2015.  

I accept that you pleaded guilty though at a very late stage on the second day after the jury was empanelled. There is little utilitarian value in the plea though I accept that there some limited saving of court time and Mr Ballantyne did not have to give evidence and I will make some allowance for that.

I shall make an order under section 248 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 disqualifying you from holding or obtaining a driving licence for a period of five years from this date.

On charge 1 you will go to prison for nine months. On charge 4 had you been convicted at the end of the trial I would have sentenced you to six years imprisonment. In view of the plea I will reduce that to one of five years eight months.  These sentences will run concurrently and will be backdated to 22 March 2016.”

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