A Derbyshire driver has been jailed for more than nine years for killing two men when he drove the wrong way down a motorway slip road.
Best friends Adam Afsar, 34, and Jason Wilby, 27, died when a car driven by 23-year-old Taryl Moxam crashed into their Skoda on a slip road of the M62 at the Chain Bar roundabout, near Bradford, in April last year.
Judge David Hatton QC told Moxam at Bradford Crown Court: “It was a grotesque piece of driving you engaged in which was protracted in its clear and obvious dangerousness.”
Earlier, the defendant had sat in the dock staring at the floor as Mr Afsar’s mother, Christine Peace, read out an emotional impact statement which left many of her family sobbing in the public gallery.
Judge Hatton told Moxam: “The anguish occasioned to the family of these young men is immeasurable.”
The court heard how the defendant had been on a night out in Leeds and returned to a room he had booked at a city centre hotel in the early hours of the morning.
But Michael Smith, prosecuting, said Moxam soon left the hotel after he appeared to have an argument of some kind.
Mr Smith said Moxam, from Barlborough, Derbyshire, got in his Vauxhall Insignia car and set off on an 18-mile trip westbound along the M62 and then around the Brighouse area.
The prosecutor said his journey ended when he drove his car the wrong way up the off-slip to the motorway from the large Chain Bar roundabout and, after about 650 metres, collided with the Skoda.
Mr Smith played motorway camera footage which showed a number of vehicles flashing their lights to warn of the danger before the crash.
He said Moxam was injured but a blood test showed he was just over twice the legal limit for alcohol and, also, for cannabis.
The judge was told that the two men in the Skoda Octavia, who were from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, were both fathers and best friends.
They had been driving to Oldham to deliver a pet, the court heard.
Mrs Peace choked back tears as she read her statement to the court.
She said: “He was the reason I got out of bed in the morning. He did everything for me.”
She added: “Life is not worth living any more without my son by my side.”
A statement from Mr Wilby’s mother, Sandra Lister, was read to the court.
Mrs Lister said her son was a “gentle giant”.
She said: “I can’t believe he is not coming back. I just want to be able to throw my arms around him.”
James Baird, defending, said his client still had no recollection of anything that happened after being in a Leeds nightclub and has no idea why he drove on April 2, last year, when he had a room booked for the night and had returned to the hotel.
Judge Hatton told Moxam, who stood in the dock wearing a blue-and-white track suit top and blue jeans, that he was imposing the maximum sentence for the offence of causing death by dangerous driving.
He said the maximum sentence after a trial was 14 years but, as the defendant had pleaded guilty, this was reduced to nine years and four months.
Detective Sergeant Carl Quinn, of West Yorkshire Police, said: “Moxam’s actions that day were nothing less than absurd.
“His senseless decision to get behind the wheel and drive resulted in utter devastation for the families of these two young men, tragically cutting their lives short.”