1. ITV Report

Driver jailed for 16 years after hitting pedestrians outside London bar

A man has been sentenced to 16 years in prison after driving into a group of pedestrians outside a bar in south London.

Mustafa Esmail, 21, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to five counts of grievous bodily harm (GBH) and was sentenced at the Old Bailey on Wednesday.

The court heard that Esmail and a group of friends tried to get into a bar on Stockwell Road, Lambeth but were not allowed in at around 3am on December 2, 2017.

A fight then broke out and Esmail threatened and assaulted a man before leaving the scene.

Minutes later, he returned in a white VW Golf, driving onto the pavement outside the bar and hitting a group of pedestrians.

He then abandoned the car and fled on foot, along with a number of others who were in the car.

The five men injured, aged between 23 and 42, suffered multiple broken bones including leg fractures, a broken shin and a spleen injury.

A number of the victims required surgery but none suffered life changing injuries.

Mustafa Esmail called a cab after driving his car into the group. Credit: Metropolitan Police

Detective Constable Tom Baxter, from the Met’s Homicide and Major Crime Command, said: “Esmail’s deliberate actions left a number five victims with significant injuries and it is only down to sheer good fortune and the work of the emergency services that the consequences were not more grave.

“Esmail attempted to evade police but will now have a considerable period of time to reflect on his behaviour that night.

“We hope this sentence brings those involved some closure and demonstrates our commitment to getting individuals intent on causing harm off our streets.

“This conviction was achieved thanks to a diligent and thorough investigation by officers and is a good example of the excellent work undertaken by MPS detectives to investigate crime and bring those responsible to justice.”

Officers from Lambeth CID identified the car used in the attack was a rental vehicle, hired the previous day.

A phone in the car linked it to Esmail, as did blood found on the airbag and fingerprints on the windows.

Police established that a call was made to a taxi firm minutes after the incident, with the driver confirming he picked up Esmail and two other men.

On Thursday, June 21 this year, following a manhunt, Esmail was stopped on Brompton Close in Hounslow, west London and arrested.

Despite giving false details, fingerprints revealed his true identity and he was charged in connection with the Stockwell Road offence.

Esmail was also sentenced to nine months for an unrelated Actual Bodily Harm offence, to be served concurrently.