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Man arrested as part of investigation into fatal Cardiff crash

17 May 2023 3 minute read
A group of people lay floral tributes left near the crash scene in the St Mellons area of Cardiff. Photo Ben Birchall PA Images

A man has been arrested as part of an investigation into a road collision in which three people were killed.

South Wales Police said the 32-year-old has been arrested on suspicion of dangerous driving and driving while disqualified on the M4 motorway at around 10pm on March 3 this year.

The force said the alleged offences for which the man has been arrested are not connected to the fatal collision, which happened at 2.03am the following day.

Driver Rafel Jeanne, 24, and passengers Darcy Ross, 21, and Eve Smith, 21, died in the collision on the A48(M) near the St Mellons area of Cardiff.

Police said their families have been informed of the arrest and continue to be supported by specially trained family liaison officers.

Detective Chief Inspector Matt Davies, of South Wales Police, said: “The arrest was made as a result of evidence identified by officers investigating the fatal collision and involves the same vehicle.

“Our detailed investigation is continuing which will enable us to provide the facts of what happened during the early hours of Saturday March 4.

“Our thoughts continue to be with the families and all those affected by this tragic incident.”

Sophie Russon, 20, and Shane Loughlin, 32, were injured in the collision and were treated in hospital.

The five were discovered on Monday March 6, around 46 hours after the crash happened.


Gwent Police and South Wales Police have been criticised over the length of time it took to find the group and are under investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

An opening inquest has heard post-mortem examinations have been carried out at the University Hospital of Wales but pathologist Dr Stephen Leadbeatter did not provide a provisional cause of death pending further investigation into histology and toxicology.

The group had been on a night out to The Muffler social club in Maesglas, Newport, on Friday March 3 and had then travelled just under 40 miles to the Trecco Bay caravan park in Porthcawl where they are said to have spent some time in one of the caravans on site.

They left and were last seen at about 2am in the Pentwyn area of Cardiff having dropped off a sixth passenger.

After failing to return home, family members of the victims reported them missing.

According to Gwent Police, the first missing person report was made at 7.34pm on Saturday.

The force did not issue a public missing person appeal until 11pm on Sunday.

The five victims and the Volkswagen Tiguan they were travelling in were found by search parties just after midnight on Monday.

The car had veered off a slip road approaching a roundabout and come to rest in a small copse of trees, shielded from the view of other motorists, nearby houses and a busy garden centre.

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