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Driver involved in fatal crash sentenced

The driver of a crash which claimed the lives of three people in 2016 has been sentenced.

Russell Stewart, 50, was sentenced in the Whangarei District Court to four months community detention and disqualified from driving for one year.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to three counts of careless driving causing death, and four of careless driving causing bodily harm in the triple fatality crash.

The crash claimed the life of his 48-year-old wife Susanna, their 16-year-old daughter Sadie, and family friend, James Wearmouth, 18,  at Baylys Beach in June 2016.

There were eight people in the five seater utility vehicle.

Stewart was first charged with three counts of aggravated careless driving causing death, four of aggravated careless driving causing injury, and one of failing to stop to check injury after an accident.

He pleaded not guilty to those charges in September 2016, before pleading guilty to amended charges earlier this month.

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