Motorist guilty of causing death of Saffron Walden motorcyclist by dangerous driving

PUBLISHED: 15:43 10 May 2013 | UPDATED: 15:43 10 May 2013

Derek Foster died in a motorcycle crash in Hempstead last year.

Derek Foster died in a motorcycle crash in Hempstead last year.

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A MOTORIST who was involved in a head-on collision in which a Saffron Walden motorcyclist died has been found guilty of causing his death by dangerous driving.

Philip Graham, 30, of Quenden Place, Haverhill, was driving along the B1054 to catch a train at Audley End when he hit a motorcycle ridden by 37-year-old Derek Foster, who was on his way to work in Haverhill.

Mr Foster, a father-of-two, of Winstanley Road, Saffron Walden, died after suffering multiple injuries.

Graham denied causing Mr Foster’s death by dangerous driving on July 4 last year but was found guilty by a jury after a trial at Ipswich Crown Court.

Sentence was adjourned for three weeks for a pre-sentence to be prepared and Judge John Devaux told Graham that all sentencing options would be open to the court.

Giving evidence during the trial Graham, a recruitment consultant, said he didn’t think he was taking a risk when he pulled out to overtake.

He said he hadn’t seen anything coming towards him when he pulled out to overtake and denied starting the manoeuvre before he reached the brow of a hill.

Graham, 30, denied he had been rushing to get to work on the morning in question and said he didn’t consider he was taking a risk by overtaking the car in front of him.

The court heard that the fatal accident happened shortly after 7am near Hempstead.

Peter Gair, prosecuting, told the court that Graham accepted he was driving carelessly on the day in question, but disputed driving dangerously.

Mr Gair alleged that Graham had pulled out to overtake a car on the brow of a hill and had collided with Mr Foster. “The evidence would suggest that the defendant couldn’t see the road ahead clearly as it is a blind hill,” he said.

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