A MAN has been sentenced to life in prison for killing two women on a rural road in New Zealand.
Auckland District Court heard the victims were walking in the village of Waimanoa, on the north shore of the South Island, when they were hit by a truck in the early hours of Saturday morning.
The court heard the truck driver had been driving the wrong way on a narrow stretch of road, and that the truck struck one of the women on the head.
The woman, who was wearing a headscarf, was taken to the hospital but died in hospital.
The driver, who pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death, was not sentenced for the attack.
The judge said the incident had put the lives of the two women’s children at risk.
The Crown also argued that the men were not in control of the truck and had failed to use common sense and common sense applied.
The Crown argued the truck was going so fast and the men’s behaviour was reckless.
“The truck did not obey the road rules, did not respect the speed limit and was not following the traffic laws,” Assistant Crown Attorney Paul Smith said.
Smith said the truck’s driver had a history of driving while disqualified, and had been disqualified before.
He said the judge had made a distinction between the driver’s “reasonableness” and the drivers “risk”.
“That distinction is an important one, and the driver was not the driver of the car,” he said.
He said there were other factors that should have led to the decision to charge the truck.
In an interview with police, the driver told officers he was trying to avoid a crash, and was driving slowly on the narrow road.
He also said the woman’s family was worried about him.
“I’ve had a few friends who’ve had heart attacks and had to be admitted to hospital.
They’ve had to do all that because they’ve got to get to work,” the driver said.