Lowood man may face jail over fatal car crash

SMASH SCENE: A man has faced court after a crash on the Brisbane Valley Highway south of the Coominya turn off claimed the life of a man in 2011.
SMASH SCENE: A man has faced court after a crash on the Brisbane Valley Highway south of the Coominya turn off claimed the life of a man in 2011. Sarah Harvey

A DANGEROUS manoeuvre on a drive from Mount Gravatt to Coominya cost one man his life, and now may cost another his freedom.

On April 21, 2011 Anh Ngoc Nguyen, 33, was driving to his family farm in Coominya with one of his close friends in the passenger seat.

On the Brisbane Valley Hwy, near the Coominya Connection Rd, Nguyen was driving close to the edge of the highway.

He performed a dangerous manoeuvre and lost control of the Suzuki wagon he was driving. The car spun across the road before hitting a tree and rolling.

Nguyen's passenger, who the court heard wasn't wearing a seatbelt, was thrown from the car and killed.

Nguyen was also injured and had to be airlifted to the Princess Alexandra Hospital.

Nguyen pleaded guilty to dangerous driving causing death at the Ipswich District Court.

The court heard Nguyen has a history of breaking traffic laws and had 11 previous offences for drink-driving.

He was demerit point suspended at the time of the crash.

Police investigations into the crash dismissed Nguyen's claim he had struck a bird and swerved to avoid others.

Nguyen, who is married with two children, grew up in Inala and currently lives in Lowood.

The court heard following the crash a distraught Nguyen visited Vietnam, where he was born, to visit family. He was arrested at the Brisbane Airport when he returned.

Defence lawyer Simone Bain said the death of his friend had severely impacted Nguyen who had discharged himself from hospital following the crash so he could speak to the mother of his friend.

"He lives with the guilt of causing the death of his friend," she said.

The court heard Nguyen continued to be haunted by the accident and had to drive past the crash site every day on his way to and from work.

Ms Bain said the death was a tragic accident but did not necessitate Nguyen serving actual time behind bars.

"Cases of momentary inattention are among the rare cases which do not (necessarily result) in a custodial sentence," she said.

He was remanded in custody over the weekend while Judge Deborah Richards considered his sentence.

He will be sentenced in the Brisbane District Court today.

Topics:  dangerous driving causing death ipswich district court

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