A senior police officer has admitted a "gap in the law" meant a driver who ran a red light and seriously injured a teenager avoided jail.

Selsdon man Amin Aminullah, 41, drove through a red light at a pelican crossing in Selsdon Park Road, South Croydon, and ploughed into 17-year-old Carshalton girl Miriam Parker as she crossed the road on New Year's Day.

She was left in a coma and defied doctors' expectations by waking up but will still need care for the rest of her life.

Aminullah, however, has escaped with just a four year driving ban and a £1,400 fine after admitting careless driving.

Following the sentencing at Croydon Magistrates Court today, Acting Detective Inspector Mark Woollard, from the serious collision investigation unit, said: "The standard of driving by Mr Aminullah fell below that of a competent and careful driver leading to a collision causing terrible injuries to the victim.

"The consequences of the collision have been emphasised to the court.

"There is an unfortunate gap in the law that does not allow a charge of causing serious injury by careless driving, which would have been more appropriate in this case."

Last week, we reported how Miriam's mum Davina said her daughter's life had been turned upside down by the incident. Her mum also said she did not believe the Aminullah's charge was correct.

The Crown Prosecution Service reviewed the charge after complaints from Miriam's family but decided not to change it.

Aminullah, of Addington Road, collided with the Archbishop Tenison High School pupil shortly before 9pm. He immediately stopped and called emergency services.

Miriam was taken to St Georges Hospital in Tooting for treatment to serious head injuries. Doctors warned that she may not survive the injuries but the confounded expectations to regain conciousness.

She was transferred to the Children's Trust centre in Tadworth where she has been undergoing extensive rehabilitation.

She hopes to return to school in September, although the aspiring nurse's hopes of going to university have been dealt a blow, despite her having three offers prior to the incident.

Aminullah admitted careless driving on July 2. He was also ordered to pay £150 in costs.