Driver fined after sun strike crash

DEENA COSTER
Last updated 07:59 31/07/2014

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A first offender was fined in the Hawera District Court this week after he pleaded guilty to causing a car accident which injured a man.

Yaliu Liu, 42, of New Plymouth, was charged with careless driving causing injury after an accident on State Highway 3, near Hawera on May 16.

According to the police summary, Liu was driving north in the 100km zone and as he went up a hill he was hit by sun strike. Despite pulling his sun visor down, he continued to drive on, rear- ending the vehicle in front of him which sent both cars off the road. The victim's car ended up on its roof. Both cars were extensively damaged and the victim was left with ligament damage in his neck.

Liu's lawyer Kelly Marriner said her client had wanted to apologise to the victim and his family and also offered them a $1000 emotional harm payment.

Judge Max Courtney said although sun strike was a factor in the crash, the defendant's carelessness had impacted on the victim and his partner and son, who were also in the car.

"He has suffered not only emotionally but financially because of what happened," Courtney said.

Liu was given credit by the judge for his lack of previous convictions and for his early guilty plea. He was fined $200 and ordered to pay $1000 in emotional harm as well as court costs of $130. Liu was also banned from driving for six months with the disqualification due to start on August 17 to accommodate his work commitments.

A man who tried to use a fake $100 bill will now have to find several hundred real dollars of his own to pay a fine.

Rahotu man Graham Lewis Lundy, 53, pleaded guilty to a charge of using a forged document when he appeared in the Hawera District Court on Tuesday.

Police prosecutor Steve Hickey told the court on June 27 that at about 1.30pm Lundy handed over the fake note to the cashier at Glover Rd's Caltex petrol station to pay for fuel. However immediately after receiving the note, the employee became suspicious and called police.

In sentencing, Judge Max Courtney gave credit to Lundy for his lack of offending history and his early guilty plea. Lundy was fined $700 and ordered to pay court costs of $130.

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