A man who led police on a 35-mile high speed chase along motorways in Kent to Surrey has been jailed.

    Rooney Whyte, 42, reached speeds of up to 130mph along the M26 and M25 in Kent to Surrey earlier this year after trying to evade officers.

    He was caught and arrested in a field with the assistance of the National Police Air Service (NPAS).

    Rooney Whyte

    On Tuesday 25 January 2022 an Audi Q5 came to officers’ attention on the M20.

    It was pursued by officers from the Roads Policing Unit along the M26.

    As it reached the M25, passing Clacket Lane Services it began to speed up, weaving across lanes and using the hard shoulder, reaching speeds of up to 130mph.

    NPAS was called in to assist, tracking its movements.

    Handgun collage desktop

    The vehicle left the motorway at Junction 11 and joined the A230, overtaking vehicles into oncoming traffic.

    The vehicle then came to a stop in a cul-de-sac in Ottershaw in Surrey where Whyte ran away from the vehicle jumping over fences into wooded areas. He was caught and arrested after he was seen to throw a handgun into some brambles.

    The pursuit and arrest of Rooney Whyte, captured from NPAS

    He was later charged with possession of a firearm, failing to stop and dangerous driving and pleaded guilty to the offences.

    At Maidstone Crown Court on Thursday 27 October 2022, Whyte from east London was jailed for five years and four months and disqualified from driving for 47 months.

    Investigating officer Detective Constable Steven Brown said: ‘Members of the public had to take evasive action to avoid a collision due to the manner of Whyte’s driving. He put himself and other road users at risk and that is not acceptable.

    ‘There is also no good reason for any member of the public to be in possession of a handgun and its live ammunition – only organised criminals with no aversion to committing serious violence would seek to possess such an item. I am therefore pleased that this weapon has been removed from circulation.

    ‘We will never show any tolerance for offending of this nature and it is only appropriate that Whyte is now at the beginning of a substantial prison sentence.’

    By Ed

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