A MAN who caused a head-on collision in Irvine following a police pursuit has been sentenced to jail time.

Maxwell Mooney, 33, pleaded guilty to a total of five charges in relation to the incident when he appeared at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court on Tuesday, December 12.

Each offence was aggravated as they were committed after he was granted bail at Dumbarton Sheriff Court in July.

Mooney - who is described as a prisoner of HMP Kilmarnock though he previously lived in Rutherglen - admitted to one charge dangerous driving on August 13 of this year as he looked to evade officers in a chase from Caprington Avenue in Kilmarnock, which ultimately ended on Towerlands Road in Irvine.

The chase began after police officers on mobile patrol in an unmarked car noted Mooney in the drivers seat of a Vauxhall Astra parked outside of a home in Kilmarnock.

Their attention was drawn to the vehicle when a “transaction” appeared to take place at the car.

However, when the 33-year-old spotted police, he made off from the scene.

As his driving became more erratic, the officers who had observed Mooney at the scene put their blue lights on and declared an official "pursuit".

The court heard Mooney began overtaking cars at excessive speeds, which reached highs of 97mph in 70mph zones. He was also observed travelling more than twice the speed limit in 30mph areas.

Mooney often drove his vehicle onto opposing sides of the carriageway, which caused several members of the public using the road to take emergency evasive action, as he made his way through various roadways in Kilmarnock, such as Lainshaw Avenue and Ayr Road via the Moorfield roundabout.

Officers on pursuit also notice a number of "white packages" being discarded from the vehicle but these were never recovered.

As Mooney reached Dundonald - where he was driving at speeds of 70mph in a 40mph zone - he them attempted a U-turn and narrowly avoided a collision with an unmarked police vehicle.

At this stage another, marked, police car joined the chase and took the lead in the pursuit.

The reckless Rutherglen man continued in his attempts to evade capture as he made his way into Irvine via the Corsehill Mount roundabout before making his way onto Towerlands Road.

It was here, while travelling at nearly 90mph on the 40mph road, Mooney crossed onto the opposing side of the carriageway once more and caused a head-on collision with another vehicle around the road's junction with Cheviot Way.

Both roads were closed with sometime after the incident, and the passenger of the car he crashed into was taken to hospital before later being discharged.

After the collision, Mooney attempted to make off on foot though was quickly captured by police.

It was at this stage it was discovered that the 33-year-old had previously been disqualified from driving, a ban that was due to be in place until 2026.

This led to two charges of driving while disqualified and driving without insurance.

While officers also observed Mooney to be "impaired and showing signs of being under influence of drugs".

A roadside saliva test returned a positive result and a blood sample was later taken.

It was then discovered that Mooney had been driving while heavily under the influence of two drugs.

He was charged with driving while the proportion of benzoylecgonine in his blood was 800 microgrammes per litre blood which - SIXTEEN times the limit of 50 mcg per litre.

Further to this, the proportion of cocaine in his blood was 88 microgrammes per litre blood which exceeded the legal limit of ten mcg per litre for this drug.

Providing defence for Mooney, his solicitor explained that the 33-year-old was only in Kilmarnock in the first instance to "pick up his brother and his partner".

They added that he appreciates that while there was no injury to people in other vehicle he was well aware of risk he put them in.

“It is only by sheer luck it is not more serious charges he is facing,” they added.

While they commented that Mooney was aware the custodial threshold had been passed, they pleaded for leniency from Sheriff Mungo Bovey.

The solicitor explained how Mooney's partner is currently "going through a bad pregnancy" and that a former partner, whom he has two children with, is currently unwell and requires support with childcare.

However, Sheriff Bovey sentenced Mooney to serve two years in prison and imposed a disqualification from holding or obtaining a driving licence for a period of seven years.