A theif who tried to outrun police by driving down the wrong side of the M11 in a stolen suped-up moped has been jailed.

Zuriel Hutson and pillion passenger Sharuk Sheraji snatched mobile phones from pedestrians in Westminster and other parts of the capital when police swooped and gave chase.

The pursuit ended when officers were forced to close a section of the motorway.

They pair were sentenced at Isleworth Crown Court on Friday (March 31) after earlier entering guilty pleas.

Hutson, 21, was jailed for two-and-a-half years, and Sheraji, 22, was given a two-year jail term.

They had been targeting pedestrians on their phones on July 26 last year, striking 10 phones in Westminster, three in Camden, two in Islington and Hackney and one in Tower Hamlets.

Zuriel Hutson continued his failed getaway after falling from his moped

Officers from Operation Attrition, the Met Police's response to moped enabled snatch offences, were mobilised in unmarked police cars with the support of the National Police Air Service helicopter.

As police gave chase, Sheraji jumped off the vehicle in Haringey and was caught and found in possession of the phones.

Hutson continued on the vehicle, heading north and onto the North Circular, all the while followed by a National Police Air Support Air Service helicopter.

He rode at speeds of up to 90mph, weaving in and out of traffic along the M11, and often against oncoming traffic on the wrong side of the carriageway.

Sharuk Sheraji was found in possession of the 18 phones

Drivers were forced to swerve to avoid a head-on collision, but some minor incidents occurred as a result of Hutson’s riding, forcing police to close part of the M11 to prevent further danger to motorists.

Before reaching this point, Hutson, 21, came off his moped while trying to squeeze between two cars on lanes two and three.

The impact knocked the shoes off his feet and he skidded along the motorway, narrowly missing the car behind.

He got back up, restarted his moped and continued along the hard shoulder against oncoming traffic.

Police eventually deployed a "stinger" tyre deflation device, which safely slowed Hutson down and eventually stopped him on the slip road of the M11 to the M25.

The pair were jailed at Isleworth Crown Court

Even then he attempted to flee bare foot but he was soon caught by police.

Both men were charged, and on January 31, Hutson, from Crowfield House, Highbury New Park, Islington, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal, dangerous driving, breach of a Criminal Behaviour Order at Wood Green Crown Court.

Sheraji, of Sebastion House, Hoxton Street, appeared at the same court on February 9 and admitted conspiracy to steal and breach of a Criminal Behaviour Order.

Detective Chief Inspector Steve Heatley said: ”Police are working hard to keep the public safe and make the streets hostile territory for criminals who use mopeds, motorbikes and bicycles to snatch valuables from members of the public.

“Both defendants, Hutson in particular, could have caused serious injury to the victims, the public, other motorists and themselves, in their callous execution of their crimes and attempts to evade justice.

"They had no regard for anyone but themselves."

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