A dangerous driver led police on a ‘considerable’ pursuit before crashing and being caught without a licence or insurance.

Alexander Healey, aged 33 of Wigan Road, Leigh, was eventually arrested after a crash on Green Meadows, Westhoughton on January 5 this year.

Brought before Bolton Crown Court, he was told that his actions could have been extremely dangerous -  but that he still had a chance at rehabilitation by the Honourable Recorder for Bolton Judge Martin Walsh.

Judge Walsh said: “It seems to me that the public interest in this case would be best served by suspending the inevitable custodial sentence that must follow.”

At a hearing earlier this year David Farley, prosecuting, told the court how Healey had driven dangerously on Wigan Road, Leigh in a silver Ford Focus which had been stolen on December 10.

His dangerous driving had included careering over a mini-roundabout, through a red light and at speeds of up to 70mph on residential roads.

Eventually Healey ended up in a cul-de-sac on Green Meadows, Westhoughton, and crashed into a concrete bollard when attempting a handbrake turn.

He then tried to make off on foot before being caught by police and pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving while banned and without insurance.

Mr Farley also explained that Healey already had previous convictions for assault, burglary, driving and drugs offences and at the time of his latest offence was subject to a community order for attempted theft and having an offensive weapon.

Clare Brocklebank, defending, argued that Healey was ‘truly remorseful’ about his actions and said he was now engaging with probation services to try and tackle his drugs problem.

Having heard from both sides, Judge Walsh adjourned that sentencing to receive more details about Healey.

Having been brought back before the court this week, Healey was sentenced to a total of 12 months in prison, suspended for two years along with an order to complete 45 days of rehabilitation activities and a 12-month drug rehabilitation programme.

Judge Walsh also banned Healey from driving for three years, after which he will have to take an extended retest.