A driver who caused a head-on 70mph collision on the A43 in Northamptonshire that left two children with “horrific” injuries has been jailed for 22 months.
Roberts Imsa, aged 32, was travelling on the single carriageway road near Blatherwycke when he attempted a dangerous overtaking manoeuvre on August 9 last year.
Northampton Crown Court heard Imsa was driving a three-litre Jaguar S-Type behind two other vehicles.
Kate Plummer, prosecuting, said Imsa pulled out and overtook one of the vehicles “completely ignoring the fact road signs indicated there was a crossroads ahead”.
After overtaking the first vehicle, Imsa then attempted to pass the second vehicle and moved his car into the opposite lane of traffic at a speed estimated between 70 and 80mph.
Ms Plummers said: “His car went straight into the path of an oncoming vehicle, a Mazda containing a mother and her two children, a girl aged 14 and a boy aged eight.”
The force of the impact pushed the Mazda into the path of the Nissan car that had been overtaken by the defendant.
The court heard that both children suffered extensive injuries as a result of the crash.
The teenage girl, who is a keen dancer, suffered three fractures to her pelvis, a broken arm, fractured eye socket and cuts to her liver and bowel.
The young boy suffered a broken collar bone, internal bleeding to his spine and had to wear a neck brace for several weeks.
Both children were airlifted to Nottingham Hospital and spent 11 nights there.
A victim impact statement written by the mother stated the consequences of the crash had put a “considerable strain” on the whole family.
She said both children missed a large amount of school and her daughter had been forced to put her dancing career on hold.
The mother said the aftermath of the crash had a detrimental affect on her marriage and she believed it was a factor in a subsequent breakdown of the relationship.
The mother said: “Both children have made good recoveries now but I still feel extremely angry about what has happened.”
Imsa, a professional driver, said in his first police interview that he felt the Nissan was being driven “poorly” so it stopped him from completing the first overtaking manoeuvre.
John Fairhead, defending, said Imsa had “simply not seen” the Mazda travelling in the opposite direction.
Mr Fairhead said the crash had “clearly caused horrific injuries to the children, not only physically, but also caused psychological trauma”.
The defence lawyer passed the judge a note his client had written to the two children in the crash.
Judge Rupert Mayo, sentencing, said he believed Imsa’s remorse was genuine but said a custodial sentence was the only option available to him.
Imsa, of Bishops Road, Peterborough, was sentenced to 22 months in prison. He is likely to serve half in custody before being released on licence.
He was disqualified from driving for two years.