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Hit and run driver who mowed couple down in an uninsured BMW is jailed


A 'callous' hit-and-run driver who killed a married couple crossing the road while he was being chased by police has been jailed for just eight years.

Abdisalan Ali, 24, raced at 90mph on the M60 in Manchester when followed by a patrol car and turned onto a 30mph road at 60mph on February 20.

While driving at high-speeds in his effort to evade the police, he drove straight into pedestrians Geraldine, 71, and Stephen Birtles, 64,  who were crossing a junction in Didsbury, Greater Manchester.

Despite taking off from the scene, Ali was later identified after his DNA was found on a drinks can left in the uninsured BMW he had borrowed and abandoned on a nearby road, Manchester Crown Court heard.

Mrs Birtles died at the scene while her husband died two weeks later on March 4.

Ali, of Whalley Range, admitted two counts of causing death by dangerous driving and driving without a licence and insurance - he was jailed for for eight years and eight months.

He was previously locked up for more than three years for dealing heroin.

Judge Alan Conrad QC said he was 'bound' by the 14 year maximum sentence in force at the time of the fatal collision.

The maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving has since recently been increased to life.

Ali did not have insurance to drive the BMW, and was also awaiting sentence after being caught driving while uninsured about six months earlier.