ZB

Boy racer legislation used to charge anti-social road user

Author
Open Justice,
Publish Date
Tue, 2 Aug 2022, 2:52pm
Michael Tucker was charged under 2009 boy racer legislation, which made it an offence to perform burnouts, following a police sting in Whanganui during the weekend. Photo / NZME
Michael Tucker was charged under 2009 boy racer legislation, which made it an offence to perform burnouts, following a police sting in Whanganui during the weekend. Photo / NZME

Boy racer legislation used to charge anti-social road user

Author
Open Justice,
Publish Date
Tue, 2 Aug 2022, 2:52pm

A driver caught in a police operation aimed at putting the brakes on anti-social road users has been charged under boy-racer legislation.

He was one of the drivers caught up in the police's "Operation Swarm", which led to 150 tickets issued and 15 cars being taken off the road on Saturday night.

On Tuesday, Michael Tucker appeared before the registrar in the Whanganui District Court facing a raft of charges stemming from the organised police sting.

Tucker didn't enter pleas to charges of sustained loss of traction, an offence under 2009 boy racer legislation, two charges of reckless driving, failing to stop for police and possession of an offensive weapon.

The tough laws were introduced to curb illegal street racing, and gave courts the power to destroy an offender's car if they ticked up three convictions within four years.

Offences under the act include racing, driving at excessive speed, and "sustained loss of traction", which included doing burnouts and drifting.

Police officers from right around the Central District converged on Whanganui, along with Ministry of Justice bailiffs and VTNZ vehicle inspectors, for "Operation Swarm" on Saturday night.

Their mission was dubbed a success, with two arrests, 150 tickets issued, 15 unsafe vehicles taken off the road, a further 10 vehicles were impounded, five drink-drivers charged and a stolen car recovered.

Whanganui Area Commander Ross Grantham said up to 450 people from around the district attended the planned event where Tucker was arrested.

Grantham believed the presence of police and other agencies had curbed the behaviour on the night, but vowed to continue targeting the group, which he said created chaos in communities.

"We want to save their lives - they continue to ignore our pleas to be sensible and drive sensibly."

Tucker was remanded to reappear in the Whanganui District Court on August 23.

- Leighton Keith, Open Justice