A 19-YEAR-OLD who allegedly stole a sports car before crashing it into a lamppost in Chorley has been arrested.

The Audi RS3 was written off after the teenager, who police say is from Essex, drove the car from a trader's address in Whalley Range, Blackburn, less than an hour earlier.

Emergency services attended the scene of the crash at around 8.40pm on Friday after the white car ploughed into a lamppost, causing the driver to become trapped inside.

He was taken to hospital with serious injuries after being cut from the vehicle by the fire and rescue services.

The car had been reported stolen around an hour before the accident happened.

The owner of the £18,000 sports car, who wishes to remain anonymous, has told the Lancashire Telegraph of his shock at the night’s events.

He said: “The lad arrived to come and view the car, which had been listed online for sale. We took it out for a test drive together and he said he would buy it.

“We went back to the unit to sort out the paperwork and he told me he needed to go out to the car to get his laptop bag, which he had left inside.”

But the trader said he didn’t realise that the teenager, who has not been named, had pocketed a set of keys while they had been in the office.

He then got inside the car and drove away.

The distraught car owner said: “I couldn’t believe what was happening, it was a total shock. We acted immediately and put out a post on Facebook and less than an hour later somebody alerted me to a posting about an accident in Chorley. When I saw it was a white RS3 which had crashed, I knew it was the car.”

The driver, who remains in hospital, has been arrested on suspicion of aggravated vehicle taking, dangerous driving, failing to stop and obstructing police.

A police spokesman confirmed: “The road was closed for several hours for accident investigation and recovery of the vehicle, believed to have been stolen from the Blackburn area earlier the same day.”

Anyone with information should call police on 101 quoting log number 1349 of December 28th.