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Lorry drivers jailed over fatal M1 crash

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Scene after M1 crash

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Two lorries and a minibus were involved in the crash on the M1 near Newport Pagnell in August

Two lorry drivers have been jailed over a crash on the M1 in Buckinghamshire that killed eight people last year.

Ryszard Masierak, 31, was jailed for 14 years after being found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving.

David Wagstaff, 54, was sentenced to 40 months in prison after pleading guilty to causing death by careless driving.

Eight people died when the minibus they were travelling in was hit by Wagstaff and shunted into Masierak’s lorry, which had stopped on the inside lane.

‘No remorse’

Sentencing the pair at Aylesbury Crown Court, Judge Francis Sheridan described Masierak as a “persistent, unmitigated, if not very accomplished liar” who had shown “no remorse”.

“What you have tried to do is blame everyone and everybody except yourself,” he told him.

The trial heard Masierak, of Barnards Close, Evesham, Worcestershire, was twice the drink-drive limit and had stopped on the inside lane near Newport Pagnell for 12 minutes before the crash.

He admitted he had consumed alcohol and said he stopped because he was sweating, felt weak and had a headache.

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Thames Valley Police

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Ryszard Masierak and David Wagstaff were sentenced at Aylesbury Crown Court

Minibus driver Cyriac Joseph was waiting with his hazard lights on to go around Masierak’s lorry when Wagstaff ploughed into the back of the van forcing it into and under Masierak’s vehicle.

Wagstaff, of Derwent Street, Stoke-on-Trent, had been on a hands-free call for an hour at the time of impact and the trial heard he did not brake before crashing into the minibus.

Judge Sheridan said Wagstaff had between nine and 11 seconds to see the vehicles ahead had he “not been so distracted by using the phone”.

“You took no action whatsoever because you weren’t concentrating on what was in front of you – they were there to be seen and you didn’t see them.”

Masierak was also disqualified from driving for 17 years after he was convicted of eight counts of causing death by dangerous driving and four counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

Wagstaff admitted eight counts of causing death by careless driving and four counts of causing serious injury by careless driving. A jury cleared him of causing death by dangerous driving.

He was banned from driving for three years.

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