News Drug-driver dad jailed over fatal SA crash

Drug-driver dad jailed over fatal SA crash

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A drug-addicted father who killed his 14-month-old daughter and injured his four-year-old son in a car crash in Adelaide has been jailed for eight years.

Tuan Quoc Nguyen, 47, was driving with methylamphetamine in his system when his car veered into a pole at suburban Greenacres on Boxing Day in 2013.

His daughter suffered a severe spinal injury which left her unable to breathe and her life support was turned off almost two weeks later.

The young boy suffered lacerations and fractures.

Passing sentence in the District Court on Wednesday, Judge Joanne Tracey said Nguyen’s failure to protect his children from the consequences of his drug addiction was a tragedy.

She told him causing the death of his daughter was also a “burden you will carry for the rest of your life”.

In earlier sentencing submissions, defence counsel Ben Sale said Nguyen was trying to keep a foot in two worlds.

“One the world of an addict and the other, the world of a father,” Mr Sale said.
“These two worlds became tragically incompatible on the day of this offence.”

In 2015, Nguyen was given a suspended three-year jail sentence for trafficking in methylamphetamine and heroin, offending he engaged in to fund his own drug addiction.

But he failed to comply with the terms of the bond by either not attending drug tests or testing positive.

After finding him guilty of aggravated causing death and aggravated causing harm by dangerous driving, Judge Tracey added a five-year head sentence for those offences to the sentence previously imposed for the drug charges, giving him a total head sentence of eight years.

She imposed a non-parole period of four years and 10 months, and also banned him from driving for 12 years.