NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Newburgh drink-drive death crash driver James Watson jailed

Brendon Main
Image caption Brendon Main died in hospital after the Newburgh collision in 2011

A drink-driver who killed his son's best friend in a crash in Aberdeenshire has been jailed for almost nine years.

Window cleaner James Watson, 38, of Dunblane, admitted causing the death of Brendon Main, 19, of Aberdeen, by driving dangerously.

The crash happened in Newburgh on 24 July 2011.

Judge Lord Burns jailed Watson for for eight years and nine months at the High Court in Glasgow.

Two other passengers in the car - Watson's 18-year-old son Levi and 17-year-old Michael Smith - were also injured in the crash.

The court heard Mr Main had driven Watson, his son and Mr Smith to the Ythan Hotel.

The plan was for Mr Main to leave his Ford Fiesta in the car park overnight and that the three teenagers would stay with Watson.

The court heard the group had about three rounds of drinks at the hotel.

However, when they left Watson decided to drive and the teenagers joined him in Mr Main's car.

'Find it extraordinary'

Witnesses described seeing the Fiesta being driven extremely fast, with noises of a loud exhaust and changing up through the gears.

The car crashed and spun.

The court heard Watson claimed he had been "distracted" by Mr Main.

Lord Burns said: "I find it extraordinary in you trying to shift blame onto the young man for whose death you were responsible."

The judge added that this made any claims of remorse "weak".

Lord Burns said the sentence would have been 11 years, but for the guilty plea.

Watson was also banned from the road for the next 15 years.

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