Minister to look at trade plate laws

Stormont’s transport minister says he is to examine the laws that allow southern registered cars travelling under trade plates to be clamped in the north.

Last month the ‘Journal’ reported that car dealer Paul Dunleavy of Modern Motors, had a vehicle clamped in Derry by the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) - despite the vehicle clearly displaying southern trade plates.

Trade plates are used by motor dealers to transport vehicles on the road which are yet to be registered or taxed.

At that time Mr Dunleavy warned cross border car trading was being threatened by clampers.

This was the second time Mr Dunleavy had a vehicle clamped

Now, in response to a question tabled by Sinn Fein MLA Raymond McCartney, the north’s transport Minster Alex Attwood says he is to look at the laws governing such cases.

“Vehicle licensing is administered by the Driver & Vehicle Agency in Northern Ireland under an agreement between my Department and the Department for Transport,” Mr Attwood says.

“It is currently an excepted matter which is the responsibility of the Secretary of State for Transport. I am aware that an issue has arisen in relation to this legislation and that a view has been taken in Derry District Policing Partnership in relation to one case. I have asked for information in relation to the case, the basis for Derry DPP taking a view on the case, the position in law in relation to powers under the current legislation and other relevant information.” he said.