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Speeding YouTube biker jailed for reckless driving

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Speeding YouTube biker jailed for reckless driving
08:00 CEST+02:00
A 31-year-old motorcyclist was sentenced to 18 months in jail on Wednesday for reckless driving and endangering other people’s lives while roaring through the canton of Geneva at speeds of more than 200 kilometres an hour.

The incident, dating from 2007, would never have come to court were it not for the fact the speeding biker filmed the ride with a video camera attached to the handle bars.

When five years later a friend posted the video on YouTube in April last year, Geneva police analyzed the images and tracked down the offender in ten days, the Tribune de Genève reported online.

This adept bit of detective work was motivated by the startling images on the video, which showed the convicted man taking incredible risks as he weaved in and out traffic on a route from Versoix through the city of Geneva, following the shoreline of Lake Geneva to Vesenaz.

The 15-kilometre trip took the motorcyclist eight and a half minutes, as opposed to the 30 minutes it would normally take while adhering to legal speed limits.

Along the way, the Geneva resident, riding a borrowed 750cc Suzuki without a proper licence, ran red lights, drove on the wrong side of the road, zig-gagged through heavy traffic and almost knocked over pedestrians.

He was travelling at an average speed of 105 kilometres an hour along the length of the route that was filmed, but he actually continued on to Thonon, a city in France, 30 kilometres east of Geneva, the Tribune de Genève reported.

When police arrived at the man’s Geneva home, the man initially tried to flee on a scooter, the newspaper said.

The prosecutor said the motorcyclist, who was 25 at the time of the incident, acted without scruples and put at “risk of imminent death” pedestrians and users of other vehicles.

The convicted man’s lawyer, Mark Barokas, said his client accepted the “severe but just” penalty, the Tribune reported.

Barokas said his client was experiencing feelings of “self-destruction” and was looking for a way to put an end to his life.

He doesn’t contest or minimize the facts of the case, the lawyer said.

The Tribune said that in addition to the jail term, the convicted man must also pay court costs and a 500-franc fine for the use of illegal drugs.

Here's the telltale YouTube video:

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