Theft of number plates
There continues to be offences of theft of number plates from vehicles
across Mole Valley. Research shows that stolen plates are used to:
- clone’ stolen vehicles for re sale
- conceal the identity of drivers involved in criminal activity (e.g. stealing fuel from petrol stations)
- evade traffic related fines including parking tickets, speeding fines and congestion charges .
There are some steps that motorists can take in order to prevent themselves becoming a victim of this crime:
The DVLA have put into place an industry standard on “anti-theft” plates which are designed to disintegrate if attempts are made to remove them from a vehicle. These plates cost approximately twice as much as standard plates, but by fitting them you may avoid the cost of replacement plates and also the need to deal with visits or letters from the police about a cloned vehicle committing offences using your registration.
A cheaper alternative is to buy “one way” screws. These are designed with heads that can be screwed on, but cannot easily be unscrewed, and usually need to be drilled out. The increased time the offender needs to spend on removing them, and the increased risk of breaking the number plate and therefore wasting their time, should serve to dissuade them from stealing from your vehicle.
If you are unfortunate and become a victim of this type of crime, please ensure that you inform the police as soon as possible so that they can record the information on the Police National Computer. This will allow any patrolling officers who stop a vehicle with your registration to make further checks to confirm its identity. In Surrey, please use the 0845 125 2222 number.