Killer drunk driver jailed for 5 years, 6 months

  • 16/12/2010

A drunk driver whose car swerved into a woman's oncoming car in south Auckland and killed her was jailed today for 5-1/2 years.

Faaotaota Faaotaota, 21, was sentenced in the High Court in Auckland this morning after being not guilty by a jury was last month of murdering Melva May Smiler, 55, but guilty of her manslaughter which he admitted.

He was also found guilty of causing grievous bodily harm to Ms Smiler's passenger, Gail Kara, for which he was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment to be served concurrently.

The crash happened in Manurewa in November 2008.

Faaotaota, who was 19 at the time of the crash, was nearly five times over the legal youth drink driving limit and had been smoking marijuana.

The prosecution claimed that Faaaotaota was suicidal after a row with one of two girlfriends and deliberately swerved his car into the path of Ms Smiler's oncoming car.

But the defence contended his the car crossed the centre line while he was kissing a girlfriend sitting in the front passenger seat.

NZPA

source: newshub archive