PAPER PLATES: Fake number plates stack up for a hefty fine
A Bundaberg man has faced court on multiple charges after being caught driving around with number plates that were made out of paper and laminated.
One outing has cost a man more than he bargained for after he committed a series of traffic related offences on the one night.
Joseph John Norman pleaded guilty in the Bundaberg Magistrates Court to four charges including one count of driving uninsured, unregistered, without a drivers licence and without registration plates, certificate or permit.
It all went down on October 12, when police were conducting patrols and intercepted Norman about 1.50am when they couldn't see a number plate on the vehicle he was driving.
Upon further inspection, police found the defendant had a paper number plate which had been laminated and stuck to the front of his car.
Removing the fake plates, police discovered Norman's real number plate and found the car was both unregistered and uninsured.
But failure to comply with traffic laws didn't stop there.
Police found that the defendant had never reapplied for a drivers licence after receiving a suspension in February, which had since been completed.
Norman told police he had borrowed the vehicle from a friend and was unaware it was unregistered, uninsured and that he had to reapply for a licence.
The court heard that the 46-year-old had an extensive history of traffic offences and while he was usually working, he'd found it challenging to find a job without access to transport.
Growing up in NSW, Norman relocated to Bundaberg a number of years ago and is a father-of-three who stays in regular contact with his children.
His defence lawyer said his client's motivation for driving stemmed from wanting to visit his youngest daughter, who was in hospital at the time.
The court heard the defendant had booked an appointment to take a test at the Department of Transport but this was cancelled due to COVID-19 and he had not attempted to re-book since.
Magistrate Andrew Moloney told Norman that rules applied to everyone.
He said while he'd seriously considered disqualifying Norman's driver's licence again, he decided against it as it would just set the defendant back further, but believed fines were appropriate.
Norman was fined $1200 and convictions were recorded.