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Mill Hill man jailed for causing death by dangerous driving
A reckless Mill Hill driver jailed today for killing his 18-year-old passenger in a high speed head-on smash was caught at more than double the speed limit on the day he first appeared at court to face the charges.
Dhasen Panchali, of Salcombe Gardens, was driving at up to 65mph in a 30mph zone when his Volkswagen Golf careered into a Renault Megane in Colindeep Lane, Colindale, on March 16, 2011.
His passenger, Zeeshan Tahir, of Kingsbury, who was on his way home from school, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Panchali was subsequently arrested and charged with causing death by dangerous driving but on the morning of his hearing at Hendon Magistrates’ Court on September 13, he was again pulled over by police for driving at 68mph in a 30mph zone.
The 19-year-old was subsequently arrested and pleaded guilty to exceeding the speed limit at West London Magistrates' Court on Wednesday March 28.
For that offence he was disqualified from driving until Tuesday May 22.
At the hearing into the death of his teenage passenger at Wood Green Crown Court on April 13, a jury found Panchali unanimously guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.
Today he was sentenced to five years in prison and banned from driving for six years.
Detective Sergeant Pidgeon, of the Metropolitan Police Service’s road death investigation unit, said: "No sentence for this appalling driving that resulted in the death of an extremely popular young man will ever lessen the grief of Zeeshan's family.
"I just hope that the outcome of the hugely excessive speed involved will serve as a warning to others and prevent another tragic and easily avoidable loss of life."