Former police officer avoids prison time over bus driver’s death at Llandilo

The scene of the accident in May 2022. Photo: Melinda Jane.
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The police officer guilty of causing the death of Luddenham man Andy Leonello has avoided prison time.

Justone Wong plead guilty earlier this year to a charge of ‘dangerous driving occasioning death’ while on duty as a police officer.

Wong was travelling 17km/h over the posted speed limit and drove through a giveway sign before colliding with the bus Andy was driving in Llandilo in May 2022.

The 76-year-old was thrown from the bus and died as a result of the blunt force trauma injuries he sustained from the crash.

Wong was this week convicted in Campbelltown District Court and sentenced to 22-months imprisonment to be served by way of an Intensive Corrections Order (ICO).

The ICO allows Wong to serve his sentence in the community and avoid going to a correctional facility.

The scene of the crash in 2021. Photo: Melinda Jane.

Wong was also ordered to complete 350 hours of community service work and is disqualified from driving for a period of two years.

Andy’s widow Margaret was joined by her two children, Melina and Peter, as they heard the news that the man responsible for his death would not spend any time behind bars. Melina shared that the family feels like there was a lack of justice served.

“Yes, we are frustrated and disappointed and I know that no matter what sentence was imposed, it’s not going to change the outcome, it’s not going to bring dad back…” Melina told the Weekender.

“This isn’t a deterrent – kill someone and you can do your punishment in the community.

“If he was walking down the street with a knife and stabbed dad, he wouldn’t have been eligible for an ICO.

“Your car is a weapon.”

Peter, Margaret, and Melina Leonello. Photo: Melinda Jane.

Melina and her family feel like there needs to be reform to the laws to make sure in the future justice in similar cases is served.

“We are just wondering what do you have to do to actually get jail? Our justice system is so wrong, what do you actually have to do?” Melina said.

“Because people who commit fraud and robbery get jail, but someone who has killed someone is allowed to do it in the community.

“I think some laws have to change.

“I hate the fact that other families are going to go through this because it is a living hell.”

Now, the Leonello family plans to move on with their lives while remembering Andy as the loving man he was.

Emily Chate

Emily Chate joined The Western Weekender in 2024, and covers local news - primarily courts and politics. A graduate of the University of Wollongong, Emily has contributed to The Daily Telegraph and worked as a freelance journalist.

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