New take on number plate thefts

News - Pakenham Officer_20160728_P3 (1).jpeg

All number plates should be sold with one-way screws, according to a leading Cardinia crime prevention campaigner.

Victoria Police crime figures show that number plate thefts increased by more than 70 per cent in Cardinia over the past year, with 170 plates stolen between April 2015 and March this year.

Neighbourhood Watch Cardinia’s David Farrelly said the theft of number plates from parked cars was one of the most common crimes in Australia.

“Stolen number plates facilitate so many more crimes aside from the theft itself, like burglaries and petrol drive-offs,” Mr Farrelly said.

“One-way screws secured to plates on cars could prevent so many crimes. And anyone can do it.

“I’ve found criminals are generally quite lazy and go for the easy target. One-way screws are extremely difficult to take off.

“Every number plate sold should be sold with one-way screws. I think we’ll see that one day. But until that does happen it will be up to individuals.”

VicRoads director of registration and licensing practice Helen Lindner said they were in discussions with Victoria Police to tackle the problem.

“VicRoads is currently working with Victoria Police to understand the complexity around the misuse of number plates in Victoria,” Ms Lindner said.

“We have undertaken research both nationally and internationally on the use of tamper-proof plates and are also investigating other options.”

VicRoads advised that drivers should report stolen number plates immediately to Victoria Police to assist investigations.

Originally published at Pakenham Officer News.


About Alana Mitchelson

Alana Mitchelson is a journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Follow her on Twitter at @AlanaMitchelson.

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