Drug dealer jailed for crash that killed London bus driver

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
One of the buses involved ended up on top of a garden wall

A convicted drug dealer who killed a bus driver and injured 14 people in a multi-vehicle crash has been jailed for seven years and eight months.

Kenneth Matcham was "ejected" from the bus he was driving when it was hit by Dorjan Cera's car on Sevenoaks Road in Orpington, south-east London.

Prosecutor Nathan Rasiah said Cera's driving on 31 October had been "appalling".

Cera pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to causing death by dangerous driving.

In a victim impact statement, Mr Matcham's daughter Shelley Gardner described her father as "the most amazing man you could have ever met".

Image source, Met Police
Image caption,
Kenneth Matcham had been driving the R11 service which was carrying six passengers when his vehicle was hit

The court heard Cera had arrived in the UK from Albania at the age of 15 and had unsuccessfully sought asylum since.

The 20-year-old, who had no insurance or licence, was driving a black Skoda Octavia he hired using false documentation, Mr Rasiah said.

"The impact of the collision forced the bus into the wrong lane, causing it to collide with another bus travelling in the opposite direction," he told the court.

"The driver of the first bus was ejected from the vehicle as a result of the collision and died from his injuries."

Image source, Met Police
Image caption,
Prosecutors said Cera's driving had been "appalling"

Seven people sustained "serious" injuries, including passenger Paul Wassell, who broke his spine in "three or four places" when he was "ejected" from the bus.

Cera also admitted seven further counts of causing injury by dangerous driving, being unlicensed and uninsured, and possession of an identity document with improper intent.

He tested positive for cocaine during a roadside drugs wipe test, but a subsequent blood test was negative.

Image source, Oli Regan/Twitter
Image caption,
The crash left debris across the scene

Cera was on licence at the time of the crash, having been sentenced to two years in detention in September 2018 for possession with intent to supply class A drugs, driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence and without insurance, and possession of false identity documents, the court was told.

Paramjit Ahluwalia, mitigating, said Cera had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and depressive episodes following the crash and was showing remorse.

Cera was also banned from holding a driving licence for 11 years and four months.

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