A driver who killed a man after she used two mobile phones behind the wheel has been jailed by a judge who branded her ‘a plague on society’.
Mother-of-one Marina Usaceva was driving a green Jaguar X-Type when she crashed into the back of a Peugeot 206, killing its 27-year-old driver.
Usaceva, originally from Latvia, told police at the scene she had not been using a phone.
But examinations later found she had sent and received texts and calls on two separate mobiles shortly before the crash.
She was jailed for six years and disqualified from driving for eight.
Prosecutor Georgina Gibbs told Peterborough Crown Court: ‘When she was told that two mobile phones had been found to be used on this occasion, she continued to deny it.’
She added that the case was aggravated by the fact Usaceva, 31, was using ‘not one but two phones’.
The crash happened on the A47 near Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, at about 4.30pm on March 15 last year.
Sukhdeep Singh Johal, 27, who had recently graduated with a biomedical sciences degree at De Monfort University, died at the scene.
Speaking after she was jailed for six years at Peterborough Crown Court, Sukhdeep’s father Buhupinder Johal said no sentence would be enough to console the family.
He added: ‘Even 60 years wouldn’t be enough, but this is some kind of justice. The only thing we can hope is that others will learn from this. People think nothing of it, but using a mobile phone while driving can kill.’
Usaceva, of Peterborough, admitted causing death by dangerous driving at an earlier hearing.
She had previously been caught twice using her phone behind the wheel and her licence was endorsed in 2009 and 2012, the court heard.
Usaceva wept in the dock as Judge Sean Enright jailed her for six years and disqualified her from driving for eight years.
The judge said: ‘If you were not sending texts at the time, then you were fiddling with your phone and that is what caused this collision.
‘In my opinion there is not a scrap of remorse.
‘Mobile phone use while driving is a plague on our society.’
Inspector Bob Turner, who oversaw the investigation for Cambridgeshire Police, said Usaceva had behaved ‘incredibly foolishly’.
He added: ‘I have never seen anything like it before – it was crass stupidity.’
The prosecutor added her car was travelling at at least 70mph in a 60mph zone but witnesses said it was travelling significantly faster because it braked sharply for a speed camera, hitting Mr Johal and causing a three-vehicle pile-up.
Ian Brownhill, mitigating, said: ‘There is a gap of six minutes – I would say clear water – between using the phones and the accident itself.’
He added that Usaceva was the sole carer of her eight-year-old son, whose father lives in Latvia, and called for the judge to consider his welfare in passing sentence.
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