Renata Gocha, when going to court last year.

12-07-2019Alejandro Sepúlveda

The Provincial Court in Palma has upheld the four year, nine month sentence handed out to Renata Gocha, the drunk driver responsible for the death of 15-year-old Paula Fornés in Sa Rapita in June 2018. She will also have to pay compensation of 173,688 euros to the family.

The court has rejected an appeal against the sentence that was the maximum tariff of four years plus nine months for driving with a false driving licence - a Polish licence. The seriousness of the offence, the court concluded, was "undeniable". She was driving while drunk, without a licence and without insurance. Police officers had to ensure that she didn't fall down because she was that drunk. She had been using her phone while she was driving. Paula Fornés was struck by her car when it crossed into the lane reserved for pedestrians and bikes. "Her conduct revealed a total disregard for the lives of others from the moment she got into the car."

The judge, Fernando Ruiz-Paco, observed that after more than a year of a court's instruction of the case, after the initial statements by Renata Gocha to that court, and after a trial for which there were more than 25 witnesses, only then - at the end of the trial - did she admit, through her lawyer, that she was the driver of the car in question, a Skoda Fabia. "It is unquestionable that had this fact been revealed previously, it would have prevented the need for many of these witnesses to have been involved and, above all, it would have avoided more suffering for the victim's family."

Renata Gocha was released on 12,000 euros bail, having spent eleven days on remand. Since then, she has had to present herself to a court every fifteen days. In November last year, the sentence was handed out.

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