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Chart Sutton driver Robert Smart jailed after farmer Jeremy Paine loses leg in crash on A259 at Brenzett

By Paul Hooper

Victim Jeremy Paine, 54, may now have to quit his livelihood after suffering many other “life-threatening and life-changing” injuries in the head-on collision, a court heard.

The car driver who caused the crash at 4pm on November 28 last year was 71-year-old Robert Smart who was returning from a fishing trip to Dungeness.

The crash happened on the A259

The crash happened on the A259

Now Smart, of Marsham Crescent, Chart Sutton, near Maidstone, has been sent to prison for two years after he admitted dangerous driving.

Canterbury Crown Court heard how he had been in his Renault car overtaking slower moving vehicles as Mr Paine, on his Suzuki, was riding in the opposite direction.

Judge Adele Williams heard how Smart had overtaken a van but instead of pulling over to his side of the road decided to overtake an Astra.

"He will no longer be able to ride a motorcycle again which is something he had done for a long time and enjoyed..." - Judge Adele Williams

She told him: “You overtook at some speed because the cars you overtook were themselves travelling at between 40 to 50mph where the speed limit was 60mph.”

After the accident the farmer was taken to hospital where surgeons removed part of his left leg and a plate and hinge were put into his right leg.

Judge Williams heard that he also suffered two broken hips, a loss of a little finger and partial loss of the use of his right hand.

She said: “The level of his injuries means he will no longer be able to take part in the physical working life on the farm and may have to give up farming.”

Mr Paine had been airlifted to hospital after the crash, which happened between Brenzett and Old Romney.

The court heard Mr Paine does not recall the whole accident and used to enjoy riding his motorbike.

Canterbury Crown Court

Canterbury Crown Court

The judge added: “He will no longer be able to ride a motorcycle again which is something he had done for a long time and enjoyed.”

She said she accepted that Smart’s remorse was genuine and he had not set out that day to cause injury.

She added:“I also accept you have led an honest, industrious life with a happy extended family.”

"It is sad for all involved that one moment of poor judgement has led to such massive repercussions..." - Mr Paine's family

But the judge said that on that day he had made “a grave error of judgement” in overtaking the cars.

Mr Paine still needs more surgery for his mass of injuries.

A statement from the family at John Paine Farms, Coldharbour Farm, Washington Lane, Old Romney, said: “To say that the accident on November 28, 2014 was life-changing was no exaggeration.

“Mr Paine sustained multiple injuries as a result of a head-on collision caused by Mr Smart.

“In addition to having his left leg amputated below the knee, multiple fractures of bones in his arms, legs and pelvis, Mr Paine had permanent damage to his right leg and his right hand.

“He will need more operations for other injuries sustained.

“Mr Paine is a fourth generation farmer on Romney Marsh who previously enjoyed an active lifestyle.

“It is sad for all involved that one moment of poor judgement has led to such massive repercussions."


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