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Lorry driver who killed dad-of-two in crash jailed for 18 months

PUBLISHED: 17:05 28 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:05 28 May 2019

Grigore Anton was driving a Scania truck on the wrong side of the road when he hit Luke Ware’s Daihatsu 4x4 on October 9 last year. Photo: Norfolk police

Grigore Anton was driving a Scania truck on the wrong side of the road when he hit Luke Ware's Daihatsu 4x4 on October 9 last year. Photo: Norfolk police

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A lorry driver who killed a father-of-two in a head-on crash near Thetford was caught driving while using a mobile phone weeks earlier, a court heard.

The Foulden Road, near Didlington, where Luke Ware died in a collision between his 4x4 vehicle and a HGV. Picture: Simon ParkinThe Foulden Road, near Didlington, where Luke Ware died in a collision between his 4x4 vehicle and a HGV. Picture: Simon Parkin

Grigore Anton was driving a Scania truck on the wrong side of the road when he hit Luke Ware's Daihatsu 4x4 on October 9 last year.

Mr Ware, 29, from Foulden, near Thetford, died less than half an hour after the crash.

Self-employed lorry driver Anton, who is from Romania, has now been jailed after a jury found him guilty of causing death by careless driving.

Sentencing the 47-year-old at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday (May 28), Judge Stephen Holt said "no words" could describe the loss of Mr Ware's family.

In a victim impact statement read out in court, Mr Ware's mother Karen said: "His death has left a hole in our lives which cannot be filled."

Speaking about Mr Ware's children, she said: "I wonder if they will remember him as they are so young. As they grow, their looks will be a constant reminder to his mum and me. They will not know Luke as we have known him."

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Anton had been travelling from Birmingham to Belgium in his own truck before stopping off at Foulden to purchase tyres on the day of the crash.

He was travelling south towards Northwold in his left-hand drive truck when the accident happened.

Prosecutor Peter Gair said two months before the fatal collision, Anton was given six points on his licence for driving an HGV while using a mobile phone. Anton, who appeared in court in a white shirt, remained emotionless until his teenage son was mentioned by his barrister.

Citing a letter from his son's teachers, Lynne Shirley, mitigating, said: "Because of the impact of his father being in the UK, there has been a real down turn in this young man's life. He is depressed and has become insular."

Sentencing, Judge Holt said: "Having listened to all of the evidence during the trial, including expert evidence, I have little doubt that as you approached that right hand bend, you were driving on the wrong side of the road. There was nothing Luke could have done to avoid a head on collision."

Anton was jailed for 18 months and disqualified from driving for 24 months.

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