North Suffolk man jailed after his friend is killed in crash

A DRINK-DRIVER who was at the wheel of a Porsche when he was involved in a crash on the Beccles-Lowestoft road in which his passenger died has been sentenced to 40 months in jail.

Shawn Smith, 41, crashed his friend Brian Hunter-Lindsay's Porsche 911 Targa on the A146 Worlingham bypass when the pair were en route to Lowestoft in the early hours of April 11, 2010.

Smith crashed the car into gorse bushes and roadside trees on the and veered into the opposing carriageway.

The Porsche then collided with a green Vauxhall Astra.

Mr Hunter-Lindsay was not wearing a seat belt and was thrown through the windscreen of the Porsche and killed. Smith suffered serious hand injuries in the collision.

Appearing at Ipswich Crown Court last Friday, Smith, of High Leas, Beccles, was sentenced to 40 months in prison and banned from driving for four years.

He had pleaded guilty in January to charges of causing death by dangerous driving, driving while disqualified and being uninsured and unlicensed.

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The court heard that Smith and Mr Hunter-Lindsay had both been drinking at a friend's house on the night of the collision and had visited Gillingham service station to buy cigarettes. Smith was nominated to drive as he was believed to be the most sober of several people they were socialising with that evening.

Smith and Mr Hunter-Lindsay, 46, headed in the direction of Lowestoft. Smith claimed he was travelling at between 60 and 70 miles per hour at this point, but investigating officers believe his speed was significantly higher.

Smith apologised to Mr Hunter-Lindsay's family who were present at the sentencing and said he felt genuine remorse for his actions.