A millionaire playboy who struck and killed two British businessmen while racing his Porsche at over 100mph along a Florida beachfront has avoided prison after cutting an extraordinary ‘blood money’ deal with his victims’ widows. Prosecutors had asked for a jail sentence of at least 10 years for Ryan LeVin, who hit Craig Elford, 39, and Kenneth Watkinson, 48, as they walked to their hotel after a night out. “He needs to go to prison. He needs to be penalised for his actions,” prosecutor Stefanie Newman told a court in Fort Lauderdale. Instead, at the urging of his victims’ families, the 36-year-old heir to a jewellery sales empire will spend two years under house arrest at his parents’ ocean-front apartment, after the judge agreed to spare him prison time in exchange for paying restitution.
LeVin is heir to Jewels by Park Lane, which has an estimated annual income of $155 million. He has a history of drug convictions, more than 50 motoring violations, and at the time of the incident was on probation for a 2006 car chase that left one police officer and two other motorists injured. Mr Elford, of Ratley, Oxfordshire, and Mr Watkinson, of Harbury, Warwickshire, had arrived in Fort Lauderdale just hours before their deaths.
LeVin had indicated that he would only plead guilty and pay up if he was allowed a non-custodial sentence.
Do the prosecutors that represent the state need to agree to this deal before the judge accepts it? I understand the victim’s families agreed but why did the state agree?
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