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Blind Man Drove At 35mph

Updated: 15:47, Monday September 04, 2006

A blind man drove a car over half a mile while receiving instructions from a friend who was banned, a court has been told.


Omed Aziz, who lost his sight in a bomb blast in his native Iraq, reached speeds of up to 35mph in Oldbury, West Midlands.


He also crossed onto the wrong aside of the road. But he denies dangerous driving.


Warley magistrates court heard Aziz also suffers from leg tremors and is partially deaf.


He was arrested by traffic police after removing his sunglasses to reveal his disability.


PC Glyn Austin said Aziz pulled over onto wasteground after the police car following him gave a blast on its siren.


"I attempted to speak to the driver, who appeared to be fumbling around with the controls," he told the court.


"At that point the passenger leaned across and stated 'He's blind'.


"Pc [stuart] Edge questioned him as to his eyesight, at which point he then removed his glasses."


Prosecutor Peter Love asked Pc Austin if he had noticed anything about Aziz.


The officer replied: "I did - he didn't have any eyes, Your Worships."


Aziz and his co-driver Dlear Ahmed were both arrested and were taken to Smethwick police station.


There the 31-year-old told officers he had driven before he was blinded in an explosion.


Defence solicitor Timothy Gascoyne said: "The question is not whether his driving was dangerous, but whether being blind makes it dangerous."


The hearing continues.


Sky News


Surreal. The last line of that report just makes it stranger.

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