Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle

Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle

The offence of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle is found in section 73 of the Road Safety Act 1986 in Victoria. It is a criminal offence that is committed by a person who was found to have defaced or changed the vehicle identification number (VIN) of a car engine. The police do not need to prove a fraudulent intent.

Have you been accused of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle? Make a time to speak with one of our lawyers before you speak with the police. Our lawyers can advise you of what to expect during the investigation so you do not say or do anything which can harm your defence later on.

Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle
Police Interview
Do police wish to speak to you in relation to the offence of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle? Do you understand what the charge means? Do you know if you have to tell police what they want to know?

Speaking to police at any time can be nerve-racking, particularly if police are investigating you in relation to an offence. If police wish to interview in relation to the offence of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle, you should contact an expert criminal lawyer for advice about whether or not to answer police questions. Your lawyer can contact police to discuss the allegations prior to your attendance at the police station for interview and also attend the police interview with you.

Pleading Not Guilty
Have police charged you with altering or defacing a VIN? Have you been summoned to Court and you wish to demonstrate that you have not committed the offence of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle?

An expert criminal lawyer will assist you to successfully defend the charge. A criminal lawyer will request and analyse the police brief of evidence and provide you with the best advice on your defence to the charge. Your criminal lawyer will then advocate on your behalf to contest the charge, test the evidence against you, cross-examine police witnesses at Court, and make submissions to the Court in relation to your plea of not guilty. You best chance to be found ‘not guilty’ is with representation from an experienced criminal lawyer.

Pleading Guilty
Have you altered the VIN of a car engine? Are you intending to plead guilty to the charge at Court? Do you understand the consequences of the charge? Are you aware of the best and worst possible outcomes when you plead guilty to the charge?

If you have committed the offence of Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle, an expert criminal lawyer will explain all of the potential consequences to you. Your lawyer will also assist you to undertake appropriate preparations prior to your ourt hearing and speak on your behalf at Court. By engaging a criminal lawyer to represent you at Court, you will ensure that you ultimately receive the best possible outcome.

This is the sort of charge that is regularly heard in the Magistrates’ Court.
 
What is the legal definition of Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle?
Offence to alter, deface or place number on engine of motor vehicle

A person is guilty of an offence if that person—

  1. without the permission in writing of the Corporation alters or defaces any number on the engine of a motor vehicle purporting to be the number of that engine; or
  2. places on the engine of a motor vehicle any number purporting to be the number of that engine without previously forwarding to the Corporation a notice in writing stating that a number is to be placed on that engine and containing particulars of the number and the registered number of the motor vehicle.
Penalty: 10 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 months.

Examples of Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle
  • Changing one of the VIN numbers
  • Scratching one of the VIN numbers to make it less visible.
  • Recreating a VIN number and re-selling the car.
Legislation
The legislation for this offence can be found on section 73 of Road Safety Act 1986.

Elements of the offence
In essence to prove this charge the Police must show the person altered or defaced any number on the engine of a motor vehicle without the written permission of VicRoads, or that the accused placed a number on the engine of a motor vehicle, without first notifying VicRoads in writing.
 
Defences to this charge can include a factual dispute, the concept of beyond reasonable doubt, or a lack of intent.

Questions in cases like this
  • Do you have any reason to have changed a number on a car engine?
  • Do you have a history of similar activity?
  • Can you verify the details around the sale of the car in question and relevant paperwork?
You should ring us and discuss your case if you have been charged. Deciding on whether to plead guilty or not has consequences for you and should be made after proper discussion with a criminal lawyer.
 

Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle (s73 of Road Safety Act 1986) has a penalty of 10 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 months.

Ten (10) penalty units is currently equal to 1,611.90 at the time of print.

Normally these matters are punished by a fine unless there are many offences and they are involved in re-birthing type offences.

Case studies related to the Offence to Alter, Deface or Place Number on Engine of Motor Vehicle