Published: 00:01, 17 October 2017
A disgraced musician whose cocaine-fuelled driving left a motorcyclist with life-changing injuries has narrowly avoided jail.
Classical violinist Victoria Yellop had a momentary lapse of concentration when she pulled her grey Mercedes into the path of a white Honda bike in Quarry Hill Road, Tonbridge on May 17, Maidstone Magistrates’ Court heard.
The victim was sent flying through the air and left with cracked ribs, a fractured sternum and a broken femur.
Afterwards, cocaine addict Yellop told police she had taken a line the night before and a drugs test revealed she was more than twice the drug-drive limit.
The 34-year-old, who once performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, wept in the dock as she heard a statement read out by prosecutor Kumud Singh in which the victim said he has been left physically and emotionally traumatised by the crash.
He will have to have a metal pole in his hip for the rest of his life and suffers from poor mobility, is constantly in pain, depressed, unable to work and in financial difficulties.
Yellop admitted driving without due care and attention and drug driving.
In July, the former private school pupil who once played for the Queen, was handed a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, after admitting perverting the course of justice, theft and being concerned in the supply of a class A drug after staging a £25,000 fake burglary at a friend’s house.
The court heard her violent and abusive boyfriend had pressured her to commit the crime. He was jailed for five years at a hearing last year.
Matthew Nickolls, defending, said the affair had destroyed his client’s career when her sponsors saw media reports of the trial. He said she was distraught by what had happened and had not used cocaine since the accident.
District judge Julia Moffatt said she could not activate the suspended sentence as the crash happened before she was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court for her previous crimes.
She handed Yellop a four-month suspended prison sentence and a six-month curfew from 9pm until 7am.
She must pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £115. She was also banned from driving for three years.
No compensation was awarded as Yellop agreed to settle outside court.
Judge Moffatt said: “With you I have someone who, through no fault of their own, has suffered quite considerably and with the victim I also have someone who, through no fault of his own, has suffered considerably too.”