A LAMPETER man has been sentenced to two years imprisonment for his role in a fatal road traffic collision that left a union official dead.
Having initially pleaded not guilty to causing the death of UNISON organiser Roger Bevan, Jack Leon Isaac Weston, of Tir Bach, Cilcennin later changed his plea to guilty and was sentenced for the crime on Monday (Oct 10) by Judge Phillip Harries-Jenkins at Swansea Crown Court.
The court heard how Weston lost control of his Honda Civic Type R motor vehicle on the B4337 between Cross Inn and Lampeter after pulling out to overtake two slow moving vehicles on a bend.
Prosecution barrister Ian Wright told the court that the foolhardy manoeuvre forced another vehicle approaching in the opposite direction to brake. However, when Weston tried to cut back in, he lost control and ploughed into Mr Bevan’s VW.
Mr Bevan was trapped in his vehicle and died at the scene.
VICTIM’S FATHER HITS OUT
In a statement made following the sentencing of Jack Weston, the victim’s father, 81-year-old Ken Bevan, said: “I would like to thank all the witnesses that came forward and the thoroughness of the Dyfed- Powys Police investigation.
“I’m also grateful for the support of the Crown Prosecution Service. Undoubtedly, it was their professional actions that led to Jack Weston changing his plea to ‘guilty’, allowing this case to be concluded without the need for a full trial.
“No sentence will bring Roger back. But I don’t see how a two year prison sentence can be seen either as an adequate punishment or a deterrent that will stop others from driving their cars in such a completely selfish, reckless and dangerous manner, like Jack Weston did when he caused the death of my son last year.
“I have lost the closest and dearest person to me but found some comfort in the comradeship and love of Roger’s friends and colleagues, and in our work for the Roger Bevan Memorial Fund.”
Roger Bevan was a UNISON Area Organiser based in Swansea and long-time activist with NUPE and then UNISON, before becoming an Area Organiser in June 2008.
UNION ORGANISER ‘WAS PASSIONATE ACTIVIST’
The 50-year-old organised and represented public sector workers in Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire. He dealt with UNISON members in local government, health and further and higher education.
He is particularly remembered as the face of UNISON for student nurses as he was responsible for recruiting, into UNISON, hundreds of students training for this key health service profession.
As well as being a talented trade union activist, Roger was a passionate political activist with a particular interest in international solidarity, in particular with Cuba and, more generally, Latin America.
Dominic MacAskill, UNISON co-worker and a close friend of Roger Bevan, commented: “The conclusion of this criminal case allows us to now start to look forward and focus on securing Roger’s positive and inspirational legacy; through the work of his Memorial Fund which Ken and friends established to support the causes that were close to Roger’s heart: socialism; internationalism and anti-racism. Our dear comrade and friend will live on, in