Horror crash driver named

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The man behind the wheel of a bus and trailer that crashed in Wilson Bay in January, causing horrific injuries to two Chinese tourists, had bid for name suppression refused in Queenstown’s court last week.

It’s the first time Christchurch man Liang Fang, 32, has appeared in court since the crash on January 21 on the Glenorchy-Queenstown Road.

The bus, carrying 23 passengers, and trailer, operated by Awing Travel NZ Ltd, tipped on its side and skidded along the road after Fang lost control on a downhill bend, about 7km from the resort.

A girl lost both hands and a woman lost an arm in the catastrophic crash – they were both flown to hospital in serious conditions.

Another 18 people suffered minor to moderate injuries, but Fang walked away unscathed.

Last week he admitted careless driving causing injury to four people, while a charge of dangerous driving causing injury to one of those people was withdrawn.

Judge Bernadette Farnan’s set a date of June 2 for sentencing, although with courts across New Zealand closed for the next month at least, that’s likely to be delayed.

She turned down Fang’s application for interim name suppression until then, but suppressed her reasons for that.

Farnan also turned down Mountain Scene’s application to photograph the defendant in the courtroom.

Fang’s lawyer, Kirsty Allan, says she’s intends to apply for a discharge without conviction on his behalf.

Gun crime

A Frenchman who went on a shooting spree with a paintball gun near Skyline’s Queenstown gondola’s $1000 poorer after his sentencing last week.

Montgomery Nicholas Archibald Tremlett, 20, who’s been working as a builder in the resort, was walking on the Tiki Trail track with a mate on February 26 when he shot his first victim with a spring-loaded paintball gun.

The Ziptrek Ecotours guide, who was with a group of customers, got hit on the leg.

Tremlett nailed his second victim, a female, with a head shot, while the third victim was hit in the head and shoulder region.

He was arrested in Stanley Street with the gun concealed under his shirt, and when cops searched him at the police station they found cannabis on him, too.

He also went shoplifting at Pak’nSave in Frankton three times over two weeks in February and last month, taking a total of five bottles of wine, a pack of chicken tenderloins and two health bars.

On March 5 he ran out of the store when challenged.

Tremlett’s lawyer, Paige Noorland, said he was due to fly out of the resort for the United Kingdom last Wednesday.

Farnan ordered him to pay $214.77 reparation to Pak’nSave, and $300 to each of his paintball victims for emotional harm.

He was convicted and discharged for cannabis possession.