A POLICE operation aimed at cutting crime by stopping vehicles with faulty number plates, has been carried out in Suffolk and Norfolk.
Operation Dragon saw Officers used ANPR (Automatic Number Plate Recognition) to detect motorists driving vehicles with faulty number plates.
It which was carried out across six counties – Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire – and saw more than 300 vehicles stopped by police.
The operation was carried out between July 16 and August 5 as part of wider policing arrangements to support security in the run up to the London 2012 Olympics.
It was the second operation of its kind and police say it significantly contributed to a decrease in crime levels, a reduction of road casualties and limited the number of unsafe drivers on the roads.
Illegal number plates include those which have fixtures which alter spaces or hide characters, that do not use the standard ‘Charles Wright’ font, or that use offensive language.
Number plates that are not easily readable to the naked eye, and that are not correctly made from a reflective material are also illegal.
Front number plates must display black characters on a white background, while rear plates must have black characters on a yellow background.
Of the 303 cars stopped, 38 were in Suffolk, 49 in Norfolk, while 101 were stopped in Herfordshire, 65 in Bedfordshire, 31 in Cambridgeshire and 19 in Essex.
“ANPR is a significant weapon in our bid to fight crime and protect the public,” said Insp Colin Bonner, from the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Roads Policing Unit “Using this technology the police across the region are helping to remove serious criminals from the roads, as well as unsafe and uninsured drivers and vehicles.
“Those who are using an illegal number plate on their vehicle will be pulled over and could face a fine of up to £1,000.
“All drivers should ensure that their number plates meet the requirements of the DVLA.”