…By for TDPel Media.
In connection with a tragic crash that claimed the lives of three individuals, a 28-year-old man, Joel Samuel Lia from Rumney in Cardiff, is facing charges.
He will appear at Cardiff Magistrates’ Court for driving without a licence or insurance in Porthcawl on March 4.
Notably, these offences occurred shortly before, but are unrelated to, the fatal crash involving the same car.
Details of the Fatal Crash:
The devastating collision took place at 2.03 am on the A48(M) near the St Mellons area of Cardiff.
The accident resulted in the deaths of driver Rafel Jeanne (24) and passengers Darcy Ross (21) and Eve Smith (21).
However, two other passengers, Sophie Russon (20) and Shane Loughlin (32), sustained injuries and managed to survive the ordeal.
Astonishingly, it took approximately 46 hours before the authorities discovered the wreckage and the victims.
Investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC):
The prolonged duration it took for Gwent Police and South Wales Police to locate the missing group, reported by their family members, has sparked an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
This probe aims to shed light on the circumstances surrounding the search and the response time of the police forces involved.
Night Out and Tragic Journey:
Prior to the crash, the group had been on a night out at The Muffler social club in Maesglas, Newport, on Friday March 3.
They then embarked on a journey in a Volkswagen Tiguan, covering just under 40 miles to reach the Trecco Bay caravan park in Porthcawl.
It is believed that they spent some time in one of the caravans on the site, which led to a noise complaint being lodged with the park’s security lodge.
Last Moments and Missing Persons Report:
After leaving the caravan park, the group was last seen at approximately 2 am in the Pentwyn area of Cardiff, where they dropped off a sixth member of their group.
It was not until 7.34 pm on Saturday that the first missing person report was filed with Gwent Police.
Surprisingly, the police did not issue a public missing person appeal until 11 pm on Sunday.
Discovery of the Car:
Finally, the car involved in the crash was spotted just after midnight on Monday morning.
It had veered off a slip road approaching a roundabout and came to rest in a small copse of trees, hidden from view of passing motorists, nearby residences, and a busy garden center.
The tragic event has left many questions unanswered, and the investigation remains ongoing to determine the full sequence of events leading up to the crash.