Dangerous Drivers

5th December 2016

Alok Sharma, the Member of Parliament for Reading West, welcomes the news that dangerous drivers who kill are set to face life sentences, under new plans put forward by ministers.

Dangerous drivers causing death by speeding, street racing or while on a mobile phone are among those now facing the same sentences as those charged with manslaughter.

Offenders who cause death by careless driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs could also be handed life sentences - an increase on the current 14 year upper limit.

New plans come as ministers seek to deter dangerous, criminal behaviour on our roads, and make sure killer drivers face the toughest penalties.

A current consultation is seeking views on whether the current maximum penalties available to the courts should be increased. Proposals include:

  • Increasing the maximum sentence for causing death by dangerous driving from 14 years to life
  • Increasing the maximum sentence for causing death by careless driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs from 14 years to life
  • Creating a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving, with a maximum sentence of 3 years
  • Increasing minimum driving bans for those convicted of causing death

Alok has campaigned for a number of years to raise awareness about the tragic case involving two of his constituents, Kris Jarvis and John Morland, who were killed by a reckless driver as they cycled through Purley in 2014.

Last year Alok secured a debate in Westminster Hall where he called on the government to toughen the sentencing regime for those who kill though dangerous driving. The debate was attended by the fiancées of Kris and John, Tracey Fidler and Hayley Lindsay.

Alok also took Tracey and Hayley to meet with the then Prime Minister David Cameron in February 2015, to press the case directly for tougher sentences for dangerous driving. In addition Alok also introduced discussions with former Justice Minister Andrew Selous MP in September 2015 and Mike Penning MP, former Minister of State for Policing, Criminal Justice and Victims, in December 2014.

Alok Sharma said: “This is an issue close to my heart and I welcome this announcement by our government to consider severer sentences for dangerous drivers. I would encourage all to read the consultation and give their views online via the Ministry of Justice website.”

Alok continued: “Nothing will ever bring back John Morland and Kris Jarvis, but this news is a step forward in securing a change in the law so that in future similar cases, the punishment will better reflect the severity of the crime.”

Tracey Fidler said: “I am really encouraged that we do seem to be moving forward in getting the law changed. All Hayley and I want is for other families of victims to feel justice is being done and we don’t think this happened in the case of Kris and John. We want their loss to mean something and lead to a change in the law and we will keep campaigning 

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