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    Apr 18, 2016

    S'porean guilty of fatal NZ crash

    SINGAPOREAN Lew Wei Kiong, who was involved in an accident that killed a motorcyclist in New Zealand last November, has been convicted of aggravated careless driving causing death, local media reports said.

    The 30-year-old, who cried in Dunedin District Court during a reading of the summary of facts on Tuesday, according to a report, had also pleaded guilty to three charges of aggravated careless driving causing injury.

    He is due to to be sentenced on June 3.

    On Tuesday, the court heard that Lew, a senior analyst at the Energy Market Authority (EMA) on holiday in New Zealand, had been driving at 120kmh at the time of the crash that killed 39-year-old Craig Alan Chambers. The maximum legal speed limit in the country is 100kmh.

    It also heard that he did not brake. He struck four vehicles, including the Harley Davidson that Mr Chambers was riding.

    Another car and a motorcycle had their wing mirrors clipped while swerving to avoid Lew's rented car.

    Mr Chambers died at the scene. His wife, who was in court on Tuesday, reportedly broke down as she heard the details of the accident.

    Lew did not dispute the facts outlined and also offered no explanation for his driving.

    "He has acknowledged his responsibility," Judge Kevin Phillips noted.

    According to the summary of facts, Lew had arrived with his 31-year-old female colleague - identified by Radio New Zealand as Tay Hui Yun - in Queenstown on Nov 20 last year.

    They rented a Toyota Corolla and had left Tekapo for Oamaru on Nov 29.

    At about 5pm, Lew was driving on State Highway 1 in a single southbound lane separated from two northbound lanes by double yellow lines.

    He allegedly crossed the yellow lines into the northbound overtaking lane at some point.

    After rounding a right-hand bend, Lew's car ran into a group of six incoming vehicles that were passing a vehicle pulling a horse float.

    Three people were hurt, including Ms Tay, who was in the passenger seat next to Lew. She was airlifted to Dunedin Hospital with serious injuries.

    Ms Tay, an assistant manager in EMA's human resources department, returned to Singapore the following month for further treatment.

    An EMA spokesman told The Straits Times in January that she was recovering well.

    The charge of aggravated careless driving carries with it a maximum fine of NZ$10,000 ($9,400) or up to three years in prison.