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Policeman sues tourist for £10m

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Feb 04, 2008

A Grampian policeman who was injured after a car crash with a tourist is suing for damages of £10m.

John Alcock, 44, who was deployed on royal protection duties at Balmoral, suffered severe brain trauma and now needs intensive 24-hour care.

Lawyers for the Italian holidaymaker had requested that the hearing only consider liability, with damages discussed at a later date.

However a judge has now ruled that the claim should be heard in full.

The damages claim, raised on behalf of Mr Alcock, who is described as being in "a persistent minimal conscious state", is one of the largest personal injuries cases to be brought in Scotland.

Funding for his private health care is currently being provided by a police charity, however Iain Armstrong QC said future funds could not be guaranteed.

Careless driving

The Court of Session in Edinburgh heard how Mr Alcock was a passenger in a marked police car travelling from Elgin in Moray, to Ballater police station on 13 August, 2003, when it was involved in a crash with a Land Rover Discovery driven by Marco Bologna.

Mr Bologna, of Riccione, Italy, later pled guilty to careless driving at Elgin Sheriff Court and was fined £1,000.

It is claimed in the civil damages action that the crash was caused by Mr Bologna's vehicle "suddenly and without warning" crossing onto the wrong side of the road.

But Mr Bologna blames the driver of the police car, Sgt Vincent Stuart, for the accident, claiming he drove onto the wrong side of the road as he rounded a bend.

The action on behalf of Mr Alcock, of Garmouth, has been brought by an Aberdeen lawyer who acts as his financial guardian.

Policeman sues tourist for £10m

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