A drug-driver who caused the deaths of a pregnant woman and her father has been jailed for 16 years.

Three other people including two young children were also injured when Nitesh Bissendary lost control of his black Alfa Romeo in Leopold StreetRamsgate, on Wednesday 10 August 2022.

He had travelled around 30 metres on the pavement before colliding with the pedestrians at around 9.35pm and then fled the scene immediately afterwards.

Nitesh Bissendary

Bissendary, 31, from Manston, admitted causing death by careless driving but denied the more serious offence of causing death by dangerous driving, in addition to causing serious injury by dangerous driving. He was convicted following a trial at Canterbury Crown Court and sentenced on Thursday 8 December 2022.

In addition to his custodial sentence Bissendary will also be disqualified from driving for 10 years following his release.

Noga Sella, 37, was five weeks pregnant when she was killed in the collision. Her father Yoram Hirshfeld, 81, also died from his injuries whilst Mrs Sella’s husband Omer was badly hurt as well.

Bissendary returned to the scene

The court heard how Bissendary returned to the scene of the incident after initially fleeing on foot, failing a roadside drug test that indicated traces of cocaine. However he refused to give a follow-up blood test following arrest. Bissendary claimed to have a vehicle defect which he was trying to rectify, causing him to take his eyes off the road moments before the collision.


Detective Inspector Lynn Wilczek of Kent Police’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit said: ‘There are few things in life as painful as the loss of a loved one, especially when such a loss comes without warning and as the result of someone else’s irresponsible behaviour. To lose two people at the same time is unimaginable.

‘From the moment he took cocaine before getting behind the wheel of his car, the actions of Nitesh Bissendary have been nothing short of disgraceful. He has refused to take full responsibility for a tragic incident that was completely avoidable and entirely of his making, going so far as to run away whilst his victims lay injured and dying. Denying his actions were dangerous only caused more pain for the family as they were forced to relive the terrible events of that night during his trial.

‘I am pleased the jury saw fit to convict Bissendary for his crimes and that he will now serve a significant period of time behind bars where he belongs.

‘This case should serve as a stark reminder to all motorists of the dangers of drug-driving and why we do not hesitate to take action against anyone who is found to be under the influence. Such selfish actions really do put lives at risk.’

Bissendary also pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm, failing to provide a sample for analysis and possession with intent to supply cocaine.

By Ed

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