Sydney, Feb 14: A court in Australia Friday sentenced a man, who was driving while high on drugs, to 11 years in jail for ploughing into a taxi, killing its Indian-origin driver and his British passenger.
Antony Edward Fogarty admitted before the Western Australia Supreme Court to killing Kuldeep Singh, 28, and 36-year-old passenger Sean Duncan Barrett, who was a doctor of Imperial College, London, while driving a stolen car under the influence of drugs, The West Australian reported.
The accused collided with Singh’s taxi at Kewdale in Perth, which had been following a green light turn and travelling only at 35 kmph in October 2012.
Fogarty was driving the car at 170 kmph, breaching red lights.
Singh and his passenger Barrett, who had just arrived in Perth for a conference, were killed instantly, with the taxi bursting into flames as a result of the collision.
The court was told that Fogarty had emerged from the stolen car after the collision, screaming with pain in his leg and claiming he was not the driver despite witnesses suggesting that he was lying.
The judge Friday accepted that Fogarty was remorseful but said his crimes were among the worst of their kind.
One red light camera caught him breaching the signal at 170 kmph.
He had also sped past a booze bus or party bus and was estimated to be speeding at an average of 152 kmph in the 20-km stretch leading to the crash.
The court heard that the accused had never held a driving licence.
Outside the court, Fogarty’s mother Faye Fogarty expressed sorrow for the families of her son’s victims.
Fogarty had a history of drug abuse.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of manslaughter.
Fogarty has to serve a nine-year rigorous jail term before he can apply for a parole.