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500 Uninsured Cars Seized

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More than 500 vehicles were seized in London last week by the Metropolitan Police due to the vehicles not being insured.

The order ‘Operation Reclaim’ came from Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe who has previously carried out the operation in Merseyside.

Around 1000 Metropolitan Officers took part in day-long operation last week.

Roadside check points were carried out by officers using the Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras.

The idea of the operation is to catch drivers with no insurance and to tackle crime which is thought to be linked with uninsured vehicles.

Bernard Hogan-Howe, who oversaw the operation said: “We know from experience approximately 80 per cent of uninsured drivers are criminals.

“They’re also more likely to be involved in crashes and have unsafe cars so we’re taking this action to make London’s roads safer.

“Driving without insurance is an offence and this operation will seize the cars of those who ignore the law, while reclaiming the roads for London’s responsible and law abiding drivers.”

The operation consists of the vehicle being checked by officers for insurance, if the driver could not produce this information, the driver is handed a £200 fine , six points on their licence and the car is then taken away to be crushed.

One specific case that officers came across during the operation involved a Ford transit van which was seized due to the vehicle not being insured, it later came to light during an investigation that early that day the van was reported stolen.

During the reclaim, officers arrested more than 50 people for driving when disqualified and for a number of other offences including driving while wanted under an arrest warrant.

To publicise the operation, crushed cars were on display in the Horse Guards Parade to show drivers the consequences of driving with no insurance.

Last year saw more than 34,000 vehicles seized due to them not being insured.

The ‘Operation Reclaim’ was initially introduced in 2007 to bring the number of non insured vehicles on the road down.

 It will be a continued campaign to target uninsured drivers around the UK.

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By Amanda Bainbridge