Jailed: Dangerous driver who attempted to flee country after Barking hit and run

Klaidas Keblas. Picture: Met Police

Klaidas Keblas. Picture: Met Police - Credit: Met Police

A driver who attempted to flee the country after seriously injuring three people in a hit and run incident has been jailed for five years.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard how Klaidas Keblas, of no fixed address, failed to stop after his car was involved in a head on collision on Barking’s Northern Relief Road, at the junction with North Street.

Keblas, 25, was able to get out of his Audi A3 following the crash in the early hours of Friday, March 6, and flee the scene instead of stopping to assist the driver and two passengers in the other car, a Vauxhall Zafira.

The two passengers - one of whom was sitting on the other’s lap in the front - sustained serious injuries, with the driver sustaining critical injuries. All were taken to hospital by ambulance.

Such was the foce of the collision that both vehicles spun around and were left facing the opposite directions to which they were originally travelling.

Meanwhile, detectives attempted to trace Keblas and through his mobile phone, which was left behind in the Audi, found that he had booked a flight out of the country for later that day.

He was arrested at Luton Airport that evening, shortly before boarding a flight to Lithuania, and charged the following day.

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The court was told that speed, alcohol and a dangerous overtaking manouevre were all factors in the collision.

Following a week-long trial, Keblas was found guilty on Monday, October 19 of two counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Guilty pleas were entered for the charges of failing to stop at the scene of a collision and failing to report a collision.

In addition to the five year prison sentence, Keblas has also been disqualified from driving for 90 months and must complete an extended retest.

Detective Sergeant Edward Coleman, of the Met’s serious collision investigation unit, said: “The not guilty plea entered by Keblas meant that all three victims were put through a criminal trial – this truly did add insult to very serious injury.

“At the time of the collision, Keblas was driving on the wrong side of the road, and although all three victims survived their injuries, two of them continue to have treatment and are still recovering more than seven months on.

“As the victims reconcile themselves to living with the after effects of their injuries, Keblas’s cowardly actions in leaving them lying injured are something he will have time to reflect on as he serves his sentence.”