Drivers who swap car licence plates overseas ‘with intention to deceive in S’pore’ are liable to fine, jail

Good to know if you're a driver.

Joshua Lee | July 9, 03:29 pm


Recently, a Singaporean BMW driver made the news for swapping his car licence plate in Malaysia, changing his licence plate to one bearing a number that was registered to a Hyundai in Singapore.

The BMW was caught speeding one hour after his plates were switched, but the summons went to the Hyundai instead. The BMW driver was later convicted for swapping plates in a Johor Bahru court and fined RM8,000 (about S$2,600).

S’porean man, 44, fined RM8,000 in M’sia for changing his BMW licence plate

Is it an offence to swap your car licence plate outside of Singapore?

According to Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan, it depends on the case.

“[If] the driver is also found to be in possession of the false plate with the intention to deceive in Singapore, the driver may be punished with a fine of up to S$5,000 and/or a jail sentence of up to 12 months,” he wrote in response to a written question posed by Ang Mo Kio Member of Parliament Darryl David.

David asked the minister if there is any kind of action that can be taken against Singaporean drivers who change their car licence plates when they enter Malaysia, especially when their actions have adverse effects on the drivers whose licence plates have been copied.

Khaw added that Singapore is happy to share information, to the extent permitted by our laws, with foreign counterparts to assist with investigations into possible offences that are committed outside Singapore.

In Singapore, however, it is an offence to display false licence plates. Offenders face a fine of up to S$5,000 and/or a jail sentence of up to 12 months.

Top image via SG Road Vigilante. 

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