MP calls for tougher driving laws

A Labour MP has called for longer jail terms for dangerous drivers, stating the current sentencing laws do not give victims justice.

Karl Turner has urged the Government to increase the maximum punishment for dangerous driving resulting in injuries from two years to seven.

Under existing laws, judges can sentence dangerous drivers to up to 14 years in prison if the victim dies, but the maximum limit is two years in case of serious injuries.

Mr Turner pointed to accidents in which the victims are so severely hurt they are left "brain damaged, paralysed or with amputations".

In these cases "the law does not currently allow the sentencing judge discretion to provide anything like the result victims might expect", he said.

MrTurner, a former barrister, told MPs: "The sentences handed down by judges leave victims feeling let down by the justice system when the offender is released from prison after a few months, by which time the victims have not even started to come to terms with the damage the offender has caused."

He also opposed proposals to further reduce the jail term for offenders who plead guilty, saying it would mean "even the worst example of dangerous driving will only attract a starting point of 12 months".

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