A driver who put fellow motorists at risk by swerving through Hume Freeway traffic as fast as 180km/h has been sentenced to 12 months in jail.
Salih Dolasan, 23, admitted he had been using the drug ice on January 12 before driving south on the freeway in a silver hatchback at 12.30pm, sparking triple zero calls from scared motorists he passed at at Barnawartha and Chiltern.
He pleaded guilty in Wangaratta Magistrates Court this week to charges including reckless conduct endangering serious injury and dangerous driving.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Sarah Williamson said a witness who had been towing a horse float estimated Dolasan was going at 180km when he overtook cars in the emergency lane at Barnawartha than swerved back into the freeway lanes.
"She was concerned the vehicle would crash. She said it came very close and it would hit her," she said.
A second witness at Chiltern estimated the car was travelling at 160km/h.
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"They were concerned the person driving the vehicle would kill someone or himself," Senior Constable Williamson said.
Highway patrol officers used stop sticks at Springhurst to deflate the left front and rear tyres of Dolasan's car, but he kept going at 20-30km/h.
He then sped away at 140km/h and was pursued by police.
"There were many attempts to stop him including hand gestures, sirens and yelling," Senior Constable Williamson said.
But Dolasan put his arm out the window and signaled for them to drive around.
He was eventually arrested near the Dominance Rest Area in North Wangaratta, and police found he was not wearing a seatbelt and had an ice pipe in the car.
Checks revealed he had never held a driver's licence.
Magistrate Ian Watkins said he would sentence Dolasan to 12 months in jail, with a minimum of six months before he could be released, and he would be disqualified from holding a licence.
"It was extremely dangerous offending," he said.
"He could have killed someone."
Dolasan has been in custody since his arrest in January.
His solicitor Nikhil Sood said Dolasan had a lengthy criminal history and suffered depression and anxiety.
"It's no excuse at all, but my client was in a state of panic, affected by drugs and didn't know how to stop the situation," he said.
"My client is extremely remorseful."