Woman fined for speeding by stranger after driver’s license stolen from mailbox
An Auckland woman believes her driver’s license was stolen from her letterbox and used fraudulently. Photo / 123rf
An Auckland woman whose driving license was stolen from her letterbox and used to buy another vehicle who was caught speeding is upset, police say the crime was too small for them can investigate.
She even alerted them to a potential address for thieves but was told that was not a priority. Now she’s worried about her identity being used in other cases and what that means for her credit history.
“If we fail to investigate these types of fraud, what message does that send to the criminal elements of our society? »
Auckland resident Justine, who did not want her surname used, said her license was taken in May 2021, but she only realized it a year later. when the Department of Justice texted him about a speeding ticket.
“It’s a weird feeling of violation… there’s this feeling of stupidity in your gut.”
Justine ordered a new license in May 2021, but canceled it after it never arrived. She admitted she could have been quicker to call it off – but never thought something like this would happen.
She did not order another at the time after being injured and unable to drive.
More than a year later, on June 30, Justine says she received an SMS from the Ministry of Justice asking her to contact them as soon as possible.
On the phone with the department, she discovered that the address and the vehicle registered in her name were incorrect. Her address was listed as being in Henderson despite living in Herne Bay.
“I said ‘I’ve never lived there and I’ve never owned this car’.”
The representative investigated the case further, she said, and revealed that her name had been against a vehicle for about two months in 2021. During that time, a ticket was issued against her name.
“This all happened a year ago and I only found out last Monday that this all happened.
“If they hadn’t gotten a speeding ticket from a camera, I never would have known my identity was stolen and used.”
She wonders what else her ID could have been used for.
“Most people wouldn’t do something like that, but someone who would…how far would they go?”
“After all, they sent the vehicle ownership papers to an address, so they had two pieces of ID with my name on it. And you only need two pieces of ID to open an electricity account .”
She said she paid for the ticket to avoid further action, but retrospectively challenged it, hoping for a refund. However, his two challenge requests were denied.
Justine said she was unhappy with the police response – and wished they had done more to investigate the matter, such as visiting the address on the vehicle’s ownership papers.
In emails to Justine seen by the Herald, a police staff member said offenders often do not use their own personal information because they know how to avoid detection and things are taped or delivered to addresses all the time that had nothing to do. with the offender.
The police staff member said this type of offense happens ‘all day, every day’ and ‘the police have competing priorities’.
“As such, we need to prioritize our fraud complaints. Your complaint has been assessed and has not met the threshold for further investigation.”
The employee empathizes with Justine about the situation and suggests that she perform a credit check on herself.
In the email, police also said a little-known fact was that fraudsters who obtained a copy of someone’s driver’s license (it didn’t have to be the actual license) could open accounts with various companies.
Senior Detective Sergeant Chris Allan told the Herald that police generally receive a high number of complaints about impersonated identities.
“Our identity information is important to all of us, and it’s also a valuable asset for fraudsters.
“We understand and recognize that being a victim of this type of crime can be extremely distressing, and although the police cannot investigate all reported crimes, if not, we are unable to to link them to other similar or more serious offences.”
Justine said she is sharing her story to raise awareness of how easily this could happen.
“I think people need to be much more vigilant. I should have been much more vigilant about my driving license and for that I feel stupid.”