Jail for reckless driver who crippled youth

An appeals court in Thessaloniki yesterday sentenced a 23-year-old man to four-and-a-half years in prison for causing a road accident that consigned a teenager to a wheelchair and left him with only one arm. The court said that the sentence was effective immediately and could not be paid off. The 23-year-old, a foreign national, failed to appear in court and is being treated as a fugitive. The accident took place in October 2006 when the man was driving at high speed past a school in the district of Kalamaria. He lost control of the vehicle and plowed into three students who had been standing on the sidewalk. Two suffered minor injuries but the third, a 17-year-old man, was seriously hurt. His arm had to be amputated and an injury to his spine has left him crippled.