Friends convicted of lying over £100k Lamborghini crash

Friends convicted of lying over £100k Lamborghini crash

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Talal Alkassab (left) and Diyaa Lababidi. Photo: Metropolitan Police

Two friends are to be sentenced next month for lying about crashing a Lamborghini Gallardo into shops and causing more than £100k (€114k) of damage.

Talal Alkassab, 39, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice at London’s Southwark Crown Court on Tuesday. His friend, Diyaa Lababidi, 33, admitted the same offence in December last year.

They will both be sentenced at Southwark Crown Court on Tuesday, April 11.

The supercar hit several bollards before ploughing into shops in the heart of London’s high-end Mayfair retail district, just after midnight on 23 July 2015.

Scotland Yard said CCTV images show the car had been driven up Woodstock Street before accelerating and colliding with the glass and metal shop fronts at speed.

Two people then got out and the supercar remained at the scene until it was recovered about three hours later. No call was made to notify police of the crash.

Alkassab, who had hired the Lamborghini a day before, told police that an unknown customer at a nearby cafe where he worked had taken the keys without his knowledge and crashed the car while parking it.

The story fell apart after detectives uncovered text messages between Alkassab, of Holland Park Road, west London, and Lababidi, of Praed Street, Paddington.

It led Alkassab to eventually admit that his friend Lababidi had been driving, Scotland Yard said.

Lababidi had previously pleaded guilty, at London’s at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in February 2016, to driving without due care and attention, failure to report a road traffic collision, having no insurance and driving a motor vehicle otherwise than in accordance with a licence.

He was given an eight-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months for failing to report the collision and was disqualified from driving for six months for driving without insurance.

His licence was also endorsed for driving without due care and attention and driving without a license.

He was ordered to pay £714.13 (€816.96) compensation to Westminster Council for damage to the bollards, plus £85 (€97.24) prosecution costs and an £80 (€91.52) victim surcharge.

Charges of attempted insurance fraud were left to lie on file for Alkassab.

After the latest hearing PC Colin Moore, of Westminster police, said: “Alkassab and Lababidi were not only involved in a serious collision that caused thousands of pounds worth of damage but Alkassan then lied to police over a considerable period of time, protracting our enquiries and delaying the matter in coming to court.

“I am pleased they have finally been held accountable for their actions and, with summer approaching, I hope this case sends a message to those who drive such vehicles about the responsibilities that come with that and the efforts police will take to tackle their anti-social use.”

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