A speeding drink driver who killed his friend in a horror crash after he got fed up waiting for a taxi has had his jail sentence cut by appeal judges.
Murray Geddes was originally sentenced to nine years imprisonment for the offence which claimed the life of Graeme McKenzie.
He was also banned from driving or 12 years but his disqualification was also reduced on appeal.
Judges at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh quashed the original penalties imposed on him and ordered he should be jailed or six years and banned for eight years.
The judge who originally sentenced Geddes at the High Court in Edinburgh last year told the 37-year-old: “You pled guilty to causing death by dangerous driving. Those words are barely adequate to describe the offence.”
Lord Glennie told him that he knew he was unfit to drive when he set off and that was why a taxi had been called.
Geddes, formerly of Linn Brae, Aberlour, Banffshire, told police after the fatal collision that he had taken his powerful two litre Audi S3 from the pub because he was “fed up waiting for a taxi”.
The offshore driller, who had a previous conviction for speeding, admitted causing the death of Mr McKenzie (38) by driving dangerously on May 16 last year on the A941 Craigellachie to Rothes road, in Morayshire, after consuming excess alcohol.
He overtook when it was unsafe, drove close to a vehicle in front and drove at excessive speed for the road conditions and lost control of the car.
One witness who was overtaken by Geddes said: “I thought to myself that I should have taken a note of his number and called the police as I thought he would kill someone.”
Another witness told police that he had become aware of a black Audi coming towards him at “a shockingly fast speed”. He said: “It was if it was jittering like you see the rally cars as they try to keep it on track.”
Prior to the crash Geddes and Mr McKenzie, who also worked offshore, had been at the Aberlour hotel about four and a half miles from the scene of the fatality.
Following Geddes being sentenced last year lawyers acting for him lodged an appeal challenging the sentence as excessive.
The appeal judges heard that he had accepted responsibility for the death and shown genuine remorse. He had had suicidal thoughts and been prescribed anti-depressants.
The Lord Justice Clerk, Lord Carloway, sitting with Lord Bracadale and Lord Malcolm, agreed that the sentence imposed on Geddes should be reduced.