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7/7/2008
Australia: Car Impounded After Leaving Impound Lot
Vehicle impounded in Victoria, Australia for allegedly doing a burnout in the impound lot.

Burnout
A young motorist in Victoria, Australia lost his car for a second time last week after a tow yard operator claimed the driver performed a burnout on his way out of the lot. The twenty-year-old driver from Brunswick initially lost his Holden sedan for 48 hours after police impounded it over an alleged violation of so-called "anti-hoon" legislation.

Anti-hoon laws authorize police to seize any automobile for two days without trial or appeal merely by asserting that its driver engaged in "anti-social" behavior. This most commonly involves doing a burnout or fishtailing the vehicle. The driver must then pay a fee of A$300 to retrieve his vehicle, generating millions in revenue for the state. Police have even set up an anonymous tip hotline to take cars from people based solely on hearsay evidence.

Such second-hand evidence was enough to bring the Brunswick motorist's car back to the lot a second time for another 48 hours.

"Police have been told the man started his car, revved the engine, acknowledged his friends and did a burnout as he drove out," Senior Constable Leigh Wadeson said in a statement.

Victoria Police are anxious to accept such tips as the law allows them to confiscate permanently any vehicle if a third accusation is made against its driver. Police charged the motorist in this case with improper use of a motor vehicle, failure to have full and proper control of a motor vehicle, careless driving and driving in a manner dangerous.



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