Reckless boy racers who hit speeds of 150mph on M11 in lockdown lose licences

260621 Essex traffic cop with speed gun
Library image of Essex traffic police officer Credit: ITV Anglia

Two young men caught racing at speeds of up to 150mph on the M11 during the first national lockdown have been convicted of dangerous driving.

They were spotted speeding up the motorway near Harlow by a police officer on patrol on Friday 22 May.

The white Audi A3 and a black Mercedes 200D were travelling close together at speeds of between 140mph and 150mph.

PC Gill Brettell tried to pull the cars over onto the hard shoulder, but they sped off immediately.

She continued to pursue the Mercedes, and arrested driver 21-year-old Xavier Palas-Caniah, from Harlow, after he had left the M11.

Jarvis Monk, 20, who had been driving the Audi, was arrested later that evening at his home in Brewers End, Takeley.

The pair admitted dangerous driving and were sentenced at Basildon Crown Court.Palas-Caniah, of Challinor in Harlow, was handed a 10-month sentence which was suspended for two years. Monk was sentenced to 8 months which was also suspended for two years.

They are both subject to a curfew between 8pm and 6am for the next three months, are disqualified from driving for two years and must take an extended test if they want to re-apply for their licence. They must do 240 hours of unpaid work each and, between them, they must pay £1400 in costs.

PC Brettell said: “The reckless actions of these young men were selfish and incredibly risky. They’ve now lost what’s most important to them – their licences.

“This is exactly the sort of driving that we see as a prelude to fatal collisions across the county, and I hope anyone else considering driving dangerously will think twice. It’s not clever, you will be caught, and we will convict you.”