Man gets five years for reckless driving causing death of three


A court has jailed a man for five years for dangerous driving causing death of three men along the Magi Highway in Central about two years ago.
Justice Panuel Mogish at the Bomana National Court yesterday found Banige Tau, 56, from Tubusereia village in Central, guilty on three counts of dangerous driving causing the death of Peter Korema, Vagi Gorabe and Korema Junior Joe along the Magi Highway on Aug 29, 2015.
Tau was driving a Mazda Bongo Ute.
A Mitsubishi Canter was parked on the edge of a bitumen and off the main road waiting for its passengers relieving themselves in the bushes.
The court heard that the vehicle driven by Tau was observed to running in an erratic fashion.
It was speeding and zig-zagging along a long stretch.
The court found that Tau failed to notice the parked vehicle and as a result ploughed into the vehicle, causing the death of his three passengers.
Justice Mogish said the offence of dangerous driving causing death had reached staggering proportions in the country over the recent years and a stern view needed to be taken to address the offence.
“The present penalty provision of  five years in my view does not reflect the prevalence and gravity of the offence and the fact that lives have been lost,” he said.
“Dangerous driving causing death is not just an accident, it involves the unlawful termination of a life and to that extent the penalty in my respectful opinion should be amended and be akin to that of manslaughter, where the parliament has prescribed the maximum penalty of life imprisonment,” Mogish said.

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