Farewell drinks ended in tragedy for an Irish farm worker at Cobden, a court heard on Tuesday.
Mark Doughty, 25, who had worked as an agricultural contractor for three years at Cobrico, was due to return to Ireland just hours after he was involved in a fatal collision at Cobden.
Warrnambool Magistrates Court was told his farewell drinks on June 4 ended in tragedy when the vehicle he was driving allegedly failed to stop at a stop sign, colliding with another vehicle, in the early hours of June 5. A passenger, 18-year-old Irish national Max Boggs, was ejected from the car and died.
Mr Doughty successfully applied for bailed during Tuesday's hearing.
He is due back in court on October 28 for a committal mention, with a brief of evidence to be completed by police in mid September.
His bail conditions included having to surrender his passport, to not apply for a new passport, to reside at Cobrico, not to leave Victoria, not to attend points of international departure, to obey a 10pm to 6am curfew, to report to Warrnambool police station once a week and to not drive.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Kevin Mullins told the court that at 1.18am on Sunday, June 5, a black Holden Astra driven by Mr Doughty was heading along Hallyburtons Road when it came to the intersection with Cross Forest Road.
A 25-year-old bartender was driving a 2017 grey Holden Colorado along Cross Forest Road.
The prosecutor alleged Mr Doughty failed to stop at a stop sign and the Colorado made impact with the passenger side of the Astra.
An 18-year-old Irish national was ejected from the Astra, he suffered critical head injuries and died despite extensive efforts to revive him.
A 21-year-old man also suffered injuries and was later flown to a Melbourne hospital for further treatment.
Blood samples were taken at hospital from the 21-year-old man, the bartender and Mr Doughty.
Police alleged the bartender had served the men about 10 drinks at the hotel and the trio finished up drinking spirits later in the night.
Senior Constable Mullins said blood samples were taken and police were waiting the results of analysis.
He said Mr Doughty's sample may very well be positive for alcohol.
Mr Doughty's barrister Ashlee Cannon said her client suffered serious injuries in the collision, including fractured ribs and his spleen had to be removed.
"He is due in hospital today for further treatment, including getting stitches out," she said.
"This is an all around tragedy. He's been living and working in Australia for three years.
"He was literally due to return home on the Sunday, later in the day of the accident."
Ms Cannon said Doughty was involved in a farewell celebration that was now "expected to cost him, most likely, going forward".
Magistrate Nunzio La Rosa said the prosecution case was in its infancy, but injuries suffered and damage to the Astra led the prosecution to claim Mr Doughty was the driver.
He said the key point not known at this stage was what part alcohol had to play in the collision.
It was indicated that if the charges, currently headed by dangerous driving causing death, were upgraded to culpable driving and that charge was proven, then Mr Doughty could expect to serve a lengthy prison term.
Mr La Rosa said the matter was unlikely to see a county court list before the end of this year and any trial would not be likely until the end of next year due to the current COVID-19 backlog.
"There are issues that are alive and have not been finalised at this stage," he said.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content:
Now just one tap with our new app: Digital subscribers now have the convenience of faster news, right at your fingertips with The Standard:
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.