A DRIVER who knocked down and killed a pensioner after taking drugs was travelling at almost 60mph when he hit his victim, a court heard.

65-year-old Colin Olawumi was on his way home after a drink in the pub with friends and was using a pedestrian crossing on Topp Way when he was fatally struck by a white Range Rover Sport being driven by Rizwan Ali.

Ali, 26, had already committed fraud by passing off his brother’s driving licence as his own in order to hire the vehicle.

Appearing at Bolton Crown Court for sentencing, Ali, of Russell Street, Heaton, was handed a 41 month prison sentence by Judge Graeme Smith who said his actions had caused a “devastating impact” on Mr Olawumi’s family.

David Cadwallader, prosecuting, said it was at around 9.53pm on August 18, 2018, when CCTV showed the Range Rover stationary at a set of traffic lights on red on Topp Way, Bolton, about 200 metres from the collision point.

When the lights changed to green, Ali sped off “under heavy acceleration” reaching a speed of 60.95mph despite the speed limit being 30mph on that stretch of road.

Meanwhile Mr Olawumi had left the Balmoral pub at 9.41pm and although the lights were green he crossed the road.

Mr Cadwallader said: “It is likely that Mr Olawumi believed he had time to cross the road in safety with the oncoming cars at a significant distance away.

“Indeed, if that was the case, he was correct because if the defendant had been travelling at a proper speed, even a few miles per hour over the speed limit he would have crossed in safety.”

At the time Mr Olawumi was seen in the road, the defendant was already about 150 yards in front of another car which had set off from the traffic lights at the same time.

Analysis of the Range Rover’s Meta Trak system showed the vehicle was travelling at 58 mph at the time of impact with Mr Olawumi.

Ali used the car to attend a wedding, and following the wedding had used alcohol, cocaine and cannabis into the early hours, the court heard.

He was found to be over the legal limit of benzoylecgonine (a metabolite of cocaine).

Mr Cadwallader said Ali had denied that he was driving dangerously, telling police officers he was travelling at 30 mph.

Reading out victim impact statements from Sheila Bolton, Mr Olawumi’s sister and his daughter, Dionne Olawumi, Mr Cadwallader described the “heart breaking effect” his death had caused the family.

Ms Olawumi referred to the “insult and the anger” felt in the family by the defendant failing to admit his guilt for 18 months, only pleading guilty at the last moment.

“They feel particularly angry by the defendant suddenly expressing remorse having fought the case at every juncture through to the trial date,” said Mr Cadwallader. “In the circumstances they consider his remorse a mere pretence.”

Photographs of Ali posing with various high performance cars posted on his social networks only increased the family’s anger, he added.

Stuart Neale, defending, said Ali offered assistance at the scene and had shown great remorse over Mr Olawumi’s death.

He added that Ali has been suffering from depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) since the incident.

Sentencing Ali, who pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, causing death while uninsured, and causing death while over the legal limit of benzoylecgonine (a metabolite of cocaine), Judge Graeme Smith said: “Mr Olawumi’s family say that their suffering has been increased by your failure to accept responsibility for what happened and by your lack of remorse, and I can understand why they feel this.

“From the outset, you maintained that this had been a ‘genuine accident’. Even after the data from the car was disclosed which showed the speed at which you had been driving, you persisted in your not guilty pleas on the remaining three charges until the day of trial, and came close to blaming Mr Olawumi by claiming that he ‘came out of nowhere’.

“You have also continued to seek to minimise your actions, referring to the fraudulent hiring of the car as a ‘silly mistake’ and commenting that ‘everyone does that’ in relation to your speeding.

“I do not accept that, even now, you have taken full responsibility for what happened.”

Ali was also banned from driving for four years and eight months and will have to pass an extended re-test before he is permitted to drive unaccompanied.