Tampering or Interfering with Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse

Tampering or Interfering With Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse is found in section 70 of the Road Safety Act 1986 in Victoria. It is a criminal offence that is committed by a person who interfered with another person’s motor vehicle without their consent.

Have you been accused of Tampering or Interfering With Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse?

tampering or interfering with a motor vehicle
Police Interview
Before you speak with police, we recommend that you obtain legal advice from one of our lawyers. We can assist you developing a strategy in relation to your interview and help guide you through common mistakes.

If the Police want to speak with you about an allegation of tampering or interfering with a motor vehicle, speak with one of our experienced lawyers before you are interviewed. If you make mistakes in the interview, you may make running a defence in Court more difficult later on.

Our lawyers can also attend the Police station with you if you feel more comfortable having someone on your side.

Pleading Not Guilty
Our firm consists of experienced criminal lawyers and in-house counsel who can develop a strategy to contest your charge of Tampering or Interfering With Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse.

One of our experienced criminal lawyers will consider the unique circumstances of your case. We’ll look for gaps in the police case against you and can conduct our own investigation to find evidence to support your case. We’ll consider your personal circumstances and work hard to protect your interests.

Charges like Tampering or Interfering With Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse require professional attention. If you wish to contest this charge, our team will work hard to push for the matter to be withdrawn by Police early or an acquittal.

Pleading Guilty
If you decide to plead guilty to a charge of Tampering or Interfering With Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse, our experienced lawyers will help you prepare a thorough and considered plea in mitigation.

In order to prepare for your plea hearing, we will prepare submissions on your behalf, help you gather character evidence and direct you to attend offence-specific courses that will demonstrate evidence of rehabilitation upon completion.

Engaging a criminal lawyer can make the difference between you receiving a with or without conviction sentence.

Sentencing
Sentencing in the Magistrates’ Courts of VictoriaSentencing Statistics Pie Chart for Tamper or Interfere With a Motor Vehicle in the Magistrates' Courts
Which court will the case be heard in?
Tampering or interfering with a motor vehicle without just cause or excuse is dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court.

What is the legal definition of Tampering or Interfering with Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse?
Section 70(1B) of the Road Safety Act defines “specified equipment” as equipment of a type specified for the purposes of this section by the Minister in a notice published in the Government Gazette.

Section 3 of the Road Safety Act defines “motor vehicle” as –

‘a vehicle that is used or intended to be used on a highway and that is built to be propelled by a motor that forms part of the vehicle but does not include—

  1. a vehicle intended to be used on a railway or tramway; or
  2. a motorised wheel-chair capable of a speed of not more than 10 kilometres per hour which is used solely for the conveyance of an injured or disabled person; or
  3. a vehicle that is not a motor vehicle by virtue of a declaration under subsection (2)(b)’.
Examples of Tampering or Interfering with Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse
  • Tampering with the brakes on a person’s car without their consent;
  • Tampering with the locks on a person’s car without their consent;
  • Letting down someone’s tires without their consent.
Legislation
The legislation for this offence can be found on section 70 of Road Safety Act 1986.

Elements of the offence
The burden rests on the Prosecution to prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt to make out this charge:

  1. The accused tampered or interfered;
  2. with a motor vehicle or equipment attached to the motor vehicle; and
  3. the motor vehicle belongs to another person.
“Can the Police prove that you did not have consent to tamper or interfere with the motor vehicle?”

Defences
If you have been charged with this offence, you may rely on one of the following defences:

  • Factual dispute;
  • Wrongful identification; or
  • Lawful excuse.
Questions in cases like this
  • Did you have consent?
  • Did you tamper with someone’s car?
You should call us to discuss your case with one of our experienced lawyers if you have been charged. Deciding on whether to plead guilty or not has important implications for you and should be made after proper discussions with a criminal lawyer.

Maximum penalty for section 70 of the Road Safety Act 1986
The charge of Tampering or Interfering with Motor Vehicle Without Just Cause or Excuse (s70 of the Road Safety Act 1986) carries a maximum penalty of 2 penalty units (fine) or imprisonment for 14 days. Apart from imprisonment or fine, if the person holds a drivers’ licence or permit, the Court may cancel that licence or disqualify the person from obtaining one for a period that the court thinks fit, not exceeding 4 years.

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