A MECHANIC who caused a head-on smash which killed his teenage brother escaped a jail sentence yesterday.
A judge spared Shaun Convery, 23, after his heartbroken parents pleaded for mercy.
Instead, Convery was ordered to carry out 250 hours of community service.
A court heard how Convery was driving a powerful Toyota MR2 for the first time when he lost control on a double bend on the busy A726 Hurlet Road in Paisley.
The sports car spun across the dual carriageway and hit a Mercedes travelling in the opposite direction.
Jamie Convery, 17, died in the wreckage, while Mercedes driver Cheung Shek, 59, suffered leg injuries and a broken breast-bone.
The force of the impact was so severe it split the Toyota in two.
Convery, who suffered minor injuries to his hand, was charged with causing death by dangerous driving but pleaded guilty to a reduced charge, admitting that his careless driving had led to the fatal smash on August 1 last year as he was going too fast.
Advocate depute Tim Niven Smith, prosecuting, told the judge that the victim’s dad, John Convery, described himself and his wife as “heartbroken” by the tragedy.
Mr Niven Smith added: “He feels that the family have already lost one son and that they do not want to lose another.”
The court heard that the Convery family were very close and the parents did not even want their son to be prosecuted for his crime.
As the family left the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday, they declined to comment but one member of the group shouted: “We thought it was fair. We have suffered enough.”
On the night of the tragedy, apprentice electrician Jamie was in the passenger seat of the two-seater Toyota as the brothers returned home from a McDonald’s restaurant.
The Toyota went into a left-hand bend, followed by a right-hand bend, on the Hurlet Road, which is the main route linking the south of Glasgow with Paisley.
As Convery negotiated the right-hand bend, the car began to slide sideways, with tyres screeching and smoke coming from the wheels.
The Toyota then crossed the central reservation and ended up in front of the Mercedes.
Crash investigators thought Convery had “over-corrected” when the sports car began to “twitch”.
They were unable to estimate the Toyota’s speed.
However, Mr Niven-Smith said that, although the speed limit for that stretch of road was 70mph, there were a number of hazard warnings and a maximum speed of 50mph was advised.
Passers-by found Jamie lying with his legs sticking out of the Toyota and his brother in shock.
When he heard a paramedic say there had been a fatality, Convery ran towards the wreck, shouting, screaming and crying ‘My brother’.
Passing sentence, Lord Turnbull said it was obvious that Convery did not mean to cause any harm when he drove that evening.
However, the judge added: “Drivers of motor vehicles must take responsibility for the way they are driven.
“When motor vehicles are driven dangerously or carelessly, it is often entirely innocent individuals who pay with their lives.”
Lord Turnbull told Convery, of Peat Road, Glasgow, he was driving at a speed and in a way which deserved prison and he could not ignore the fact that another driver had been seriously injured.
But he added that the death of his brother was an important factor in the case.
As well as being handed a community service order, Convery was also banned from driving for five years and fined £200 for driving without insurance.
In court yesterday, defence advocate Allan MacLeod said Convery remembered little of the crash but would never forget the sight of his brother lying dead.
The lawyer added: “He is still clearly devastated by what happened.
“Clearly, he has been deeply affected since the commission of this offence, struggling to come to terms with his brother’s death, and he attended bereavement counselling for four months.”