A Manchester thief who stole the handbag and shoes of a traffic victim while she lay decapitated in the road is facing jail after his court appearance yesterday.

Marc Kirvin, 46, picked up the bag which contained £1,600 in cash moments after Sawari Ashraf, 62, was hit by a lorry.

Kirvin told officers that he didn't see the woman as her bag flew 400ft away from her body when she was hit.

His arrest came after the CCTV footage was shown on Crimestoppers and a member of the public recognised him.

Prosecuting at Manchester magistrates court, Jennifer Baines, said that she accepted the man may not have seen the woman as there was no debris.

She added: "The most aggravating feature in this case is because he took the handbag, police had no identification and the lady's family weren't aware for two days that their mother and their grandmother had been taken from them."

Ashraf's family released a statement where they said they were troubled by the fact that, being a Muslim family, they couldn't bury her as soon as possible, according to tradition.

The statement added: "Our family cannot express the stress, anxiety, heartache and sadness this has caused."

Judge Wendy Lloyd adjourned the case until 20 June, adding: "The defendant must have known that losing that sum of cash would be massively distressing to anyone. He must be prepared for the worst."

The lorry driver who hit Ashraf was arrested on suspicion of causing death by careless driving but was bailed pending further inquiries.