No review of bus-driver plea deal for 'abused' families

Several families of those killed in Australia's worst road crash in decades say they have been left devastated after learning manslaughter charges against bus driver Brett Button cannot be reinstated.

The 59-year-old was given a plea deal in exchange for admitting to lesser charges over the smash that killed 10 wedding guests and injured dozens more in June 2023.

Fathers Adam Bray and Matt Mullen have since attempted to reverse the charges in a bid to get justice for their son and daughter who died when their coach slammed into a guard rail and rolled near Greta in the NSW Hunter Valley.

But after a meeting with NSW Attorney-General Michael Daley on Monday, the pair were told nothing could be done.

"The harsh reality for us today is that there is no intervention, there is no reinstating manslaughter charges ... it's already gone through the court system, it's now moved forward to sentencing," Mr Bray told Sydney radio 2GB shortly after the meeting.

Mr Daley's office has been contacted for comment.

Adding insult to injury was the lack of communication from the Director of Public Prosecutions before learning manslaughter charges would be dropped, families have said.

Victim advocate Howard Brown said many families only learned of the decision the day before the matter went to court and they were robbed of the opportunity to provide any input.

"Some of the victims got two days' notice and some only had one days' notice," he told AAP.

"That is appalling. You're talking about people who are highly traumatised and when you exclude them from obtaining justice, it's a secondary form of abuse."

Manslaughter charges against Brett Button won't be reinstated.
Manslaughter charges against bus driver Brett Button will not be reinstated. (Mark Russell/AAP PHOTOS)

Premier Chris Minns said he was concerned to find out the families were notified "at the last minute" of the change in charges.

"They believed that the prosecution was heading down a particular path for manslaughter charges and were told (of the changes) the day before," he said.

"Honest communication between the prosecution authorities and victims of crime needs to be an absolute priority."

Mr Minns said the families had requested to meet with the attorney-general after he asked the DPP for a full briefing on the matter.

"Victims of crime, family members of victims of crime, have every right to be listened to and consulted about major changes or prosecutions or changes to prosecutions that are launched by the NSW government," he said.

The office of the DPP previously said it acknowledged that some people had been left disappointed by the plea-deal decision, which was made after "close and careful" consideration of the evidence and after "ongoing consultation" with families.

"While the ODPP takes into account their very important views, the final decision is a legal decision made by reference to many factors, including the evidence in the particular case," it said in a statement.