Pudsey man who led police on five-mile car chase said 'Jeremy Clarkson would have been proud'

A Leeds man who led police on a five mile high-speed chase has been jailed, after claiming "Jesus" was driving and that "Jeremy Clarkson would have been proud".

By Richard Beecham
Friday, 17th June 2022, 1:17 pm

Luke Hargreaves, 32, of Bradford Road, Pudsey, led police on a chase around West Leeds despite having no licence, often speeding on the wrong side of the road and putting other motorists in danger.

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On Friday, May 6, Police officers noticed a white Peugeot van speeding down Stanningley Bypass, and that the following chase saw officers having to travel at 85mph just to keep up.

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The hearing took place in Leeds Crown Court.

The chase continued down Swinnow Lane and onto Stanningley Road, where Hargreaves drove on the wrong side, causing other vehicles to swerve to avoid a collision.

The defendant then slammed on his brakes to avoid triggering a speed camera, causing the van to skid and mount the pavement - being snapped by the camera in the process.

As the chase continued, Hargreaves went went through a red light on Galloway Lane before travelling towards Thornberry on Bradford Road.

After a 5.3-mile chase, Hargreaves was eventually arrested and interviewed by police, where he went on to say "Jesus" had been driving and that "Jeremy Clarkson would be proud" of his driving.

Hargreaves later pleaded guilty to dangerous driving.

Mitigating for Hargreaves, Adrian Pallor told the court the Jesus and Jeremy Clarkson comments had been made sarcastically.

He added: "There appears to be no reason why this offence occurred. It was not because of drugs or being involved in another crime. There is no good reason for how he behaved that day."

Mr Pallor went on to say that Hargreaves previously worked as a commodities trader and had built up a sizeable fortune that he planned to put down on a house. But following the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, he lost around £80,000 and found himself living with his mother.

He added: "He is a man with prospects and is driven."

Sentencing Hargreaves, Recorder Richard Thyne said: "You continually failed to stop for the police while driving at such speed that they lost sight of you.

"You knew you should not have been driving when you got into the car."

He sentenced Hargreaves to six months in prison, with a 15 month driving ban.