Wembley taxi driver accused of killing teacher in A40 crash

A frustrated taxi driver from Wembley rammed into the back of a car so hard it ‘folded like a penknife’ and killed the driver during the morning rush hour, a court heard.

Kugannesan Balasubramaniam, 31, of Longley Avenue, allegedly ploughed his Peugeot car into the 1963 MGB convertible roadster at 48mph on the A40 Westway.

Nick Sennett, who had hired the vintage vehicle, suffered serious head injuries as his car was shunted forward violently in the four-car crash on April 16.

The 58-year-old, who taught economics at Latymer Upper School in Hammersmith, died at the scene.

Southwark Crown Court heard Balasubramaniam had just collected a sixth-form student from Heathrow Airport and was taking her to an address in northwest London when the accident occurred.

Mr Bleaney told the court: “Shortly before the collision she noticed the defendant making a mobile phone call, she thinks the phone was put to his ear rather than using a hands-free system but perhaps more importantly she started to pay attention to what was going on in front of her.

“She simply watched as the defendant drove into a car in front.

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“The MGB folded like a penknife.”

The force of Balasubramaniam’s ramming also shunted cars ahead of the MGB in the four-car crash, jurors heard.

Balasubramaniam told officers the car pulled suddenly in front of him into his braking distance, the court heard.

A tracking device inside the vehicle recorded the minicab driver was speeding at 48mph on the 40mph road, jurors heard.

He was also overworked, having worked 90 hours in the previous seven days for the cab hire company One to One, it was said.

Balasubramaniam denies a single charge of causing death by dangerous driving.

The trial continues.