Plans made to crush car

KIMBERLEY CRAYTON-BROWN
Last updated 11:24 15/12/2011

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Arrangements have tentatively been made for a Milton teenager's car to be crushed in Dunedin after he received his third "boy racer'' conviction this week.

Karn Forrest, 18, appeared in the Balclutha District Court on Monday charged with sustained loss of traction and disqualified driving.

Judge Stephen O'Driscoll sentenced him to community work, disqualified him from driving for a further 13 months and also ordered his car, a 1982 Toyota Corolla, be seized and destroyed.

Forrest told The Southland Times he was a bit sad to lose his car and did not want to talk about the incident.
The Sentencing (Vehicle Confiscation) Amendment Act gives authorities the power to seize and destroy

ehicles after the third illegal street racing conviction in four years. It came into effect in December 2009 and it is believed Forrest's car is the first to be crushed under the legislation.

Ministry of Justice general manager district courts Tony Fisher said there was a 28-day appeal period after an order for confiscation and destruction of a vehicle is made.

The Balclutha Court manager/registrar had tentatively arranged for the vehicle to be destroyed in Dunedin by a scrap metal company called Everitt Enterprises, Mr Fisher said.

There are several steps the registrar takes to ensure all ownership interests are addressed and any outstanding costs associated with confiscation and destruction are met, he said.

Judges were given the power to destroy vehicles involved in illegal street racing activities because if a vehicle was confiscated only there was the possibility that vehicle will again end up back on the road after it has been sold at auction.

The amendment to the Sentencing Act means these vehicles can be removed from New Zealand roads altogether, Mr Fisher said.

Southern District Road Policing Manager Senior Sergeant Steve Larking said it was inappropriate for police to comment on the outcome of the court process but said police regularly dealt with illegal street racers. They also ran road policing campaigns targeting their activities.

"Illegal street racers feature in fatal and serious crashes and represent a significant risk to other road users,'' Mr Larking said.

At the moment there are 88 people in New Zealand who have received two convictions for illegal street racing, and if convicted of a third could be subject to the Land Transport (Enforcement Powers) Amendment Act and the Sentencing (Vehicle Confiscation) Amendment Act specifically targeting illegal street racers, he said.

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Of those 86, 14 were in the Southland and Otago regions.

- The Southland Times

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