Preston woman who said she had been driving to protect her sister after serious crash hauled before court
Nail technician Rakesh Kaur, 29, of Watling Street Road, Fulwood, Preston, arrived at the chaotic accident scene around 20 minutes later with several other relatives, and swapped clothing with her sister, Lakshmi Kaur, 21, a new driver.
The mum-of-one then approached police officers and told them she - not Lakshmi - had been the driver.
But road officers had already spoken to Lakshmi Kaur about the accident and were immediately suspicious.
Lakshmi was driving Rakesh’s Nissan Juke at the time of the collision at the junction of Garstang Road and Blackpool Road in Preston on June 21 last year, but she had only recently passed her test and was not insured to drive the car, which suffered £9,000 damage.
Lakshmi was dealt with earlier in the week at Preston Magistrates’ Court where she admitted driving without due care and attention and without insurance.
Rakesh Kaur pleaded guilty to intending to pervert the course of justice and was sentenced to six months, suspended for two years, at Preston Crown Court.
Paul Brookwell, prosecuting, said the offence was caught on a police bodycam of an officer who attended the scene to take people’s details.
He said: “ Lakshmi was spoken to by PC Sweeney, She co-operated throughout and admitted to the officer that she was in fact the driver of the car on the night in question, that she was driving her sister’s car with other family members present in the car.
“Lakshmi provided a negative sample of breath and she then got out of the police car and walked up the road and got in another car.
“In the meantime other members of family arrived at the scene including the defendant.
“The defendant stated at the roadside she was in fact the driver and was wearing a garment her sister had been wearing - her sister was up the road wearing a coat of hers.
“The officer came to realise what had happened and walked up the road with the defendant, not accepting what had happened, and spoke again to Lakshmi.
“It transpired Lakshmi did not have insurance for the use of that vehicle.
“The motive was financial in my submission. That now has worked the other way. The insurance will not pay out.”
The court was played a snippet of bodycam footage in which the officer is heard saying: “Your family turning up kicking of with everyone does not help matters - it’s a disgrace.
“Why are you lying to us?”
Kaur’s defence lawyer Mr East said: “It was an intense situation.
“It was a stupid act, a mistaken act of loyalty thinking she was protecting her sister’s position and her ability to drive.”