A West Vancouver man who had his 2015 Ferrari impounded last summer after being clocked going 210 kilometres an hour on the Lions Gate Bridge will pay a $750 fine but won’t face an additional driving ban, a provincial court judge has ruled.
Judge Eugene Jamieson handed the fine to Yihao Wang, 23, in North Vancouver Tuesday afternoon after Wang pleaded guilty in court April 24 to driving too fast for road conditions under the Motor Vehicle Act.
Jamieson imposed the fine after Wang stood in court and told the judge through a Mandarin interpreter, “I’m really sorry for what I did…I promise I will not do that again.”
Jamieson described Wang’s driving as “reckless” and “showing a significant disregard for others using the road,” noting that Wang has a record for speeding excessively three times prior to having his supercar impounded.
“There’s a lot of things that could have gone terribly, terribly wrong in this situation,” the judge said.
Crown and defence lawyers both asked the judge for the $750 fine, as part of a joint sentencing submission.
Crown counsel Lara Sarbit described how a West Vancouver police officer was monitoring traffic with a hand-held radar gun at the north end of the bridge at around 12:40 a.m. July 4 when “he heard an engine howl and saw a pair of bright headlights emerge” from the crest of the bridge deck. The Ferrari was “travelling far faster than any other vehicle” the officer had seen on the bridge, said Sarbit, adding the officer clocked it with his radar gun at 210 km/h.
Wang’s lawyer David Baker told the court his client is still under a 16-month driving ban imposed by the superintendent of motor vehicles and has paid a price for his actions.
“He’s been harassed by the media,” said Baker. “It’s been acutely embarrassing for him. The value of his family home has been reported in the news.”
Wang, a married university student who is also the father of a young child, came to Canada in 2012, Baker told the judge.
Wang did not stop to talk to reporters as he left the courthouse wearing a black surgical mask, sunglasses and baseball cap to hide his face. He got into a white Porsche SUV with a friend, who drove away from the courthouse.
Asked whether the public would consider the fine a stiff enough punishment, Baker told reporters outside the court that what matters is that the principles of sentencing were applied fairly to his client’s case.
Baker added it’s fortunate there’s no accident anytime someone speeds excessively. “It happens all the time in Vancouver. Anyone who drives around Vancouver will see people doing things where they’ll say to themselves, well that could cause a catastrophic accident but it doesn’t. There was no accident here. There was no near accident. He was seen speeding and he was signalled to stop and he did so.”
Just three months earlier, police clocked Wang going 126 km/h over the bridge in a Mercedes CLS66, and he was given a $483 fine.