Stolen number plates being used to commit crimes

Pic: Adam Tinworth/Flickr

Lewisham police have urged motorists to take extra care following a surge in number plate thefts over the past month.

Detective Inspector Steve Heatley from Lewisham CID said: “Stolen number plates have been used to dodge the congestion charge, evade speed camera fines, and drive away from petrol stations without paying.”

In extreme cases they have even been put on getaway vehicles to help offenders commit more serious crimes.

Heatley said: “It is really important for all motorists to be vigilant and take extra care with their vehicle now the nights are drawing in. I have personally witnessed an increase in number plate theft and feel it is important we try to combat this issue.”

In an effort to reduce the amount of number plate thefts, Lewisham police has recommended a number of crime prevention techniques.


  • Fit theft-proof screws or special number plates to your vehicle.
  • Use special number plates that are designed to break apart if they are forcibly removed from a vehicle.
  • Contact your local car dealer or registered number plate supplier for further information, including fitting and cost.
  • Report the loss of your number plates immediately as it is an offence to drive without them.  [/callout]

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