Garda's cloned car reg used in crime spree
A licence plate, cloned from the private car of a garda, has been used in as many as a dozen crimes committed in recent months.
At last night's meeting of the Clare Joint Policing Committee (JPC) in Ennistymon, Clare Chief Superintendent John Kerin confirmed that between 10 and 12 crimes have been committed by a person or persons driving a vehicle with licence plates cloned from the Limerick-based garda's private vehicle.
Chief Supt Kerin did not identify the garda and declined to give details on the nature or severity of the crimes committed.
It was also confirmed at last night's JPC meeting that the licence plates of a speed camera van have also been cloned in the west of Ireland in recent months.
A vehicle fitted with the cloned speed camera van plates was subsequently captured on camera by a real speed camera van, travelling well above the speed limit.
Clare county councillor Tony Mulqueen (FG) raised the issue of licence-plate cloning at the meeting.
Mr Mulqueen said that he had been travelling in a neighbour's vehicle in Clare last month when a vehicle with identical licence plates was recorded by a speed camera in Dublin.
He called for legislation to be put in place to control the sale and supply of licence plates. Responding to this request, Chief Supt Kerin said that legislation would do little to prevent criminals from cloning licence plates.
"Legislation is one thing, but to be honest, the people who supply these number plates are not reputable business people who would comply with legislation," he said.