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Theft of vehicle number plates

Alert message sent 08/08/2019 10:07:00

Information sent on behalf of Thames Valley Police


There has been a recent spate of number plate thefts in your area. It is a national problem and has increased in recent years in part due to an increase in speed cameras, a rise in petrol costs and charges to use certain roads. Offenders have looked at ways to hide the identities of their vehicles so they can engage in criminal activity whilst avoiding detection.


Number plates are being stolen from vehicles of all makes, models and ages.

How to combat it:

Non reversible screws have been developed to help combat this crime. The number plate screws are special one-way devices that cannot be unscrewed once fitted. Any attempt to steal the plate would require force, causing the plate to break. Therefore if the thief steals the plates, they are damaged in such a way that makes them useless for criminal purposes.

Traditional number plates are fixed to vehicles using plastic bolts. If non-reversible screws are not available, it is recommended that double sided tape is used instead of plastic bolts. This makes the plate harder to remove and also may well lead to the plate breaking and therefore rendering it useless. When taking your vehicle for its next garage maintenance visit why not ask for your car number plates to be attached in this way?
Message sent by
Ian Stacey (Police, Neighbourhood Policing Administrator, Chiltern & South Bucks)

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