The BOSS 302 Registry Numbers Games V.I.N. Tampering
Straight to the point: Let there be no doubt that it is illegal to tamper with a Vehicle Identification Number (V.I.N. or VIN) on a vehicle or even the parts of a vehicle.

This is not an all inclusive list of state laws/statutes. It is merely a sampling. Do not assume because a state is not mentioned here that there are no such laws in that state (country).

Legal research/reference provided by Sam Mamola, J.D.

18 USCS § 2321

TITLE 18. CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
PART I. CRIMES
CHAPTER 113. STOLEN PROPERTY

18 USCS § 2321 (2003)

§ 2321. Trafficking in certain motor vehicles or motor vehicle parts

(a) Whoever buys, receives, possesses, or obtains control of, with intent to sell or otherwise dispose of, a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part, knowing that an identification number for such motor vehicle or part has been removed, obliterated, tampered with, or altered, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

107 A.L.R.5th 567

SUMMARY: Illegally removing or altering a vehicle identification number (VIN) or selling or possessing a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN constitutes a crime in most states. In order to impose liability, state courts normally require a culpable mental state on the part of the defendant in altering or removing a VIN or in possessing a vehicle or vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN. Some states, however, do not require any culpable mental state on the part of the defendant when selling a vehicle or vehicle part with a removed or altered VIN.

For example, in State v. Smith, 972 S.W.2d 476, 107 A.L.R.5th 791 (Mo. Ct. App. W.D. 1998), the defendant sold a vehicle that was subsequently found to have an altered VIN. The defendant claimed the state was required to establish that he had knowledge of the VIN alteration at the time the sale occurred. The court held that while knowledge was required for possessing a vehicle with an altered VIN, the statute's plain language indicated that knowledge was not required when selling a vehicle with an altered VIN.

Most state courts held that knowledge of the altered or removed VIN is required before the defendant can be convicted of altering or removing a VIN or possessing or selling a vehicle or vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN ( § 10[a] ). However, a few courts have concluded that from a plain reading of the applicable statute, knowledge of the altered or removed VIN is not required when altering or removing a VIN or possessing or selling a vehicle or vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN ( § 10 ). Courts singled out a number of particular circumstances as tending to establish knowledge of an altered or removed VIN on the part of the defendant. For instance, knowledge was found to exist where there is physical evidence of the VIN alteration as well as proof the defendant tried to sell the vehicle or had possession of the vehicle for a long period of time ( § 10[c] ). Knowledge was also proved by evidence that the defendant was warned of a missing or altered VIN and did not correct the defect or where the police found evidence of a "chop shop" and other dismantled vehicle parts in the defendant's possession ( § 10[c] ). To the contrary, courts found the defendant did not have knowledge of an altered or removed VIN where, although there was evidence of possession or sale of the vehicle, there was no direct or physical evidence the defendant altered or removed the VIN ( § 10[d] ). Knowledge was also not proved where the defendant merely leased a building to a person operating a "chop shop" and did not know what was happening inside the building ( § 10[d] ).

Along with the culpable mental state requirement, courts also addressed the criminal conduct involved in altering or removing a VIN or possessing or selling a vehicle or vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN. For example, state courts found that a VIN was altered or removed even if the concealed VIN was not removed or the vehicle bore an additional VIN not affixed by the manufacturer ( § 12[a] ).

Delaware:

In Tackett v. State, 416 A.2d 1225 (Del. 1980), the court held that two statutes: (1) the possession of a vehicle with a removed VIN (Del. Code Ann. tit. 21, § 6709); and (2) the possession of a vehicle with knowledge that the VIN is falsified with intent to misrepresent the identity (Del. Code Ann. tit. 21, § 6705(d)) were not unconstitutionally vague. The court noted that the standard for judging the certainty of a criminal statute is whether it is specific enough to give notice to a person of ordinary intelligence of the conduct prohibited. Consequently, the court found Del. Code Ann. tit. 21, § 6705(d) clearly comports with constitutional standards of specificity in that the statute unambiguously describes both the conduct prohibited and the requisite states of mind. The court also found that Del. Code Ann. tit. 21, § 6709 was not vague as applied to this case because the indictment charged that the defendant knew of the altered VINs; the defendant was in the auto repair business and a former employee of a major automaker, giving rise to a fair inference that he was familiar with confidential VINs; and the defendant's knowledge that the VINs had been altered was charged and proven.

New York:

The court held in People v. Giese, 95 Misc. 2d 792, 408 N.Y.S.2d 693 (Sup 1978), order aff'd without published op, 68 A.D.2d 1019, 414 N.Y.S.2d 947 (2d Dep't 1979), that federal law (Federal Safety Act, 15 U.S.C.A. §§ 1381 et seq. (Repl.; see 49 U.S.C.A. §§ 30101 et seq.)) did not preempt N.Y. Penal Law § 170.70, which makes it illegal to possess a VIN that has been removed from a vehicle or vehicle part to which the VIN was affixed by the manufacturer in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Motor Vehicle and Information Cost Savings Act. The court noted that the promulgation of the safety standards cannot be said to be so pervasive of the area to prevent the state of New York from enacting and enforcing laws with respect to the illegal possession of VIN plates in order to reduce the incidence of motor vehicle theft. Consequently, the court held that such legislation was not in conflict with the purpose or language of the Federal Safety Act.

Maryland:

In interpreting Md. Ann. Code art. 66 1/2, § 73 (1957), which prohibits a person from knowingly possessing or selling a vehicle or vehicle part with an altered or removed VIN, for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the identity of the vehicle or vehicle part, the court in Greenway v. State, 8 Md. App. 194, 259 A.2d 89 (1969), concluded that "knowingly" as used in the statute means "having knowledge." A person thus may be found to have knowledge by evidence establishing that one has actual or direct knowledge of the VIN removal or alteration. For example, explained the court, actual knowledge is when one removes or alters the number personally, while direct knowledge is when one admits to knowing that the number has been removed or altered, and has no reasonable nonculpable explanation as to why it has been removed or altered.

Missouri:

The court in State v. Smith, 972 S.W.2d 476, 107 A.L.R.5th 791 (Mo. Ct. App. W.D. 1998), held that the plain language of Mo. Rev. Stat. §§ 301.390.1, 301.390.6 (1994) does not require criminal intent when selling a vehicle with an altered or removed VIN. The statute's language prohibits a person from selling or offering for sale, or knowingly having the custody or possession of a motor vehicle with an altered or removed VIN. The court said that the legislature clearly and deliberately wrote the statute so that "knowingly" refers only to the crime of custody or possession, and not to the crime of selling or offering for sale. The requirement that the defendant know the VIN was altered or removed in order to be convicted thus applies only to the crime of custody or possession, and not to the crime of sale.

Knowledge found:

The courts in the following cases held that the defendant knowingly altered or removed a vehicle identification number (VIN) or sold or possessed a vehicle or vehicle part knowing it had an altered or removed VIN.

Georgia:

In Martin v. State, 160 Ga. App. 275, 287 S.E.2d 244 (1981), the court found that a man who rebuilt and sold a vehicle with parts containing altered or removed VINs knowingly concealed or misrepresented the identity of the vehicle under Ga. Code Ann. § 68-9916(a). Since the Motor Vehicle Certificate of Title Act requires that the certificate of title for any vehicle that has been rebuilt, reconditioned, or remanufactured must so state on the face of the title, and the certificate of title that the man obtained for the vehicle did not disclose on its face that the vehicle had been rebuilt, the court found there was enough evidence to conclude that he knew the vehicle contained an altered or removed VIN.

The court in Ramey v. State, 239 Ga. App. 620, 521 S.E.2d 663 (1999), denied a directed verdict of acquittal when the court found enough circumstantial evidence that the car dealer sold the stolen vehicle knowing it had an altered VIN, which is prohibited under Ga. Code Ann. § 40-4-22(a). Because the car's true VIN was damaged and then concealed, and a false VIN plate applied loosely to the door, changes that a person in the business of buying and selling cars should have noticed, and the VIN stamped on the false plate and used by the dealer for the bill of sale did not match the car and could not have been assigned to that year vehicle, the court found sufficient evidence to show the dealer had guilty knowledge of the altered VIN.

Illinois:

Enough circumstantial evidence was found by the court in People v. Kilgore, 33 Ill. App. 3d 557, 338 N.E.2d 124 (2d Dist. 1975), to sustain the defendant's conviction under Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 95 1/2, P 4-103(b) (1973), for knowingly possessing a vehicle with an altered or removed VIN. The court found that the combination of circumstances, which included the payment of $ 500 for a car valued at more than $ 2,000; the falsified VIN on the bill of sale in defendant's possession; the defendant's explanation that he purchased a burned out car and added value thereafter, which was refuted by the actual condition of the car; the fact the defendant did not present invoices or receipts corroborating his story that he bought parts to repair the car; and his failure to complete the title application or apply for plates in the time available, supported the conviction.

Kansas:

In State v. Holland, 141 Kan. 307, 40 P.2d 469 (1935), the court held there was enough evidence to uphold a conviction of possessing a vehicle, whose VIN was altered or removed in violation of Kan. Stat. Ann. § 8-116(b). The evidence included testimony of the VIN alteration or removal, which showed that several VINs had been ground off and other VINs were stenciled on. In addition, it was found that the defendant had been in the possession of the vehicle for 15 months and therefore had enough time to gain knowledge of the change in the numbers.

Massachusetts:

In Com. v. Perreault, 13 Mass. App. Ct. 1072, 435 N.E.2d 635 (1982), the court found was sufficient evidence to convict the defendant of violating Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 266, § 139(b)-(c), which prohibits the possession or sale of a vehicle or vehicle part knowing the VIN has been altered or removed. Because the defendant testified that the true VIN numbers were no longer on the cars and an auto theft investigator testified as to what the VINs were as they appeared on the stolen vehicles and what the VINs should have been, the court concluded that the Commonwealth satisfied its burden of proving that the defendant knew the vehicles had altered or removed VINs.

Ohio:

In State v. Halczyszak, 1990 WL 32605 (Ohio Ct. App. 8th Dist. Cuyahoga County 1990), the court upheld a conviction under Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 4549.62(D)(1), after it was found that salvage yard owners knowingly possessed a vehicle in which the VIN was altered. The court found that the case record revealed that the owners knowingly and purposely altered the body of an older vehicle by attaching the VIN from a newer vehicle. In addition, one of the salvage yard owners further demonstrated this knowledge by stating to the police that she believed they could transfer the VIN from one car to another.

Missouri:

According to the court in State v. Wakefield, 682 S.W.2d 136 (Mo. Ct. App. S.D. 1984), there was sufficient evidence to convict the owner of a salvage yard and repair shop of removing or defacing a vehicle's VIN in violation of Mo. Rev. Stat. § 301.400 (1978). The court held there was enough evidence in the record that permitted the inference that at some time the owner, or his employees, mounted the body of a stolen 1978 vehicle on the frame and transmission of a 1980 vehicle, which the defendant had acquired as salvage. The public VIN was removed from the 1980 salvage vehicle and was affixed by homemade rosette rivets to the body of the 1978 vehicle. Thereafter, the reconstituted vehicle was sold as a 1980 model vehicle. The court found the above evidence was sufficient to support the judgment of conviction under the statute.
Here are cites to individual state laws and cases:

JURISDICTIONAL TABLE OF CASES and STATUTES

UNITED STATES CODE

18 U.S.C.A. § 2321 See --§ 2[a]
18 U.S.C.A. § 511 See --§ 2[a] --§ 5

ALABAMA

Alabama Code 32-8-86(a), (c) See --§ 10[a]
Alabama Code 32-8-86(b), (d), (e) See --§ 11[a]
Alabama Code 32-8-86(c) See --§ 10[d]

State v. Honda, 387 So. 2d 219 (Ala. Civ. App. 1980--§ 10[d]
State v. Self, 492 So. 2d 319 (Ala. Crim. App. 1986)--§§ 10[a],11[a]

ARKANSAS

Hall v. State, 171 Ark. 787, 286 S.W. 1026 (1926)--§ 10
Ogburn v. State, 168 Ark. 396, 270 S.W. 945 (1925)--§ 13

CALIFORNIA

California Veh. Code 10752(a) See --§§ 3 11[a]
California Veh. Code 10802 See --§ 12

People v. Joiner, 84 Cal. App. 4th 946, 101 Cal. Rptr. 2d 270 (5th Dist. 2000) --§ 12
People v. Suk, 220 Cal. App. 3d 952, 269 Cal. Rptr. 676 (2d Dist. 1990) --§§ 3 11[a]

COLORADO

Colorado Rev. Stat. Ann. 18-5-305 See --§ 8
Colorado Rev. Stat. Ann. 42-5-102(2) See --§§ 3 8 10[a]
Colorado Rev. Stat. Ann. 42-6-117 See --§ 3

People v. Bossert, 722 P.2d 998 (Colo. 1986) --§§ 3 8
People v. Sequin, 199 Colo. 381, 609 P.2d 622 (1980) --§§ 3 10[a]

DELAWARE

Delaware Code Ann. tit. 21, 6705(d) See --§ 3
Delaware Code Ann. tit. 21, 6709 See --§ 3

State v. Derrickson, 31 Del. 342, 114 A. 286 (Gen. Sess. 1921) --§ 11[a]
Tackett v. State, 416 A.2d 1225 (Del. 1980) --§ 3

FLORIDA

Florida Stat. Ann. 319.33(1)(d) See --§§ 7 10[a] 10[d] 11 12[a] 12

City of Margate v. Singh, 778 So. 2d 1080 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 4th Dist. 2001) --§ 12
Cooper v. State, 585 So. 2d 489 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 5th Dist. 1991) --§ 12[a]
Jackson v. State, 736 So. 2d 77 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 4th Dist. 1999) --§ 10[d]
Rogers v. State, 656 So. 2d 245 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 5th Dist. 1995) --§ 7
Stark v. State, 316 So. 2d 586 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 4th Dist. 1975) --§§ 10[a] 10[d]
State v. Copher, 395 So. 2d 635 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2d Dist. 1981) --§ 11
State v. Kennedy, 390 So. 2d 456 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2d Dist. 1980) --§ 12

GEORGIA

Georgia Code Ann. 40-4-22(a) See --§ 10[c]
Georgia Code Ann. 68-9916 (a)-(c) See --§§ 10[a] 11[c]
Georgia Code Ann. 68-9916(a) See --§ 10[c]

Dooley v. State, 145 Ga. App. 539, 244 S.E.2d 55 (1978) --§ 10[a]
Greer v. State, 113 Ga. App. 342, 147 S.E.2d 877 (1966) --§ 10[c]
Hubbard v. State, 239 Ga. App. 632, 521 S.E.2d 678 (1999) --§ 10[c]
Martin v. State, 160 Ga. App. 275, 287 S.E.2d 244 (1981) --§ 10[c]
McCannon v. State, 161 Ga. App. 685, 288 S.E.2d 663 (1982) --§ 10[c]
McJunkin v. State, 160 Ga. App. 30, 285 S.E.2d 756 (1981) --§ 11[c]
Ramey v. State, 239 Ga. App. 620, 521 S.E.2d 663 (1999) --§ 10[c]

ILLINOIS

625 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/4-103(a)(2) See --§ 11[a]
625 Ill. Comp. Stat. 5/4-103(a)(4) See --§§ 11[a] 11[d]
625 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/4-103(a)(5) See --§§ 3 8

People v. Billardello, 319 Ill. 124, 149 N.E. 781, 42 A.L.R. 1146 (1925) --§ 10
People v. DePalma, 256 Ill. App. 3d 206, 194 Ill. Dec. 594, 627 N.E.2d 1236 (2d Dist. 1994) --§§ 11[a] 11[d]
People v. Fernow, 286 Ill. 627, 122 N.E. 155 (1919) --§ 10
People v. Johnson, 288 Ill. 442, 123 N.E. 543, 4 A.L.R. 1535 (1919) --§ 10
People v. Kaye, 264 Ill. App. 3d 369, 201 Ill. Dec. 450, 636 N.E.2d 882 (1st Dist. 1994) --§ 10[c]
People v. Kilgore, 33 Ill. App. 3d 557, 338 N.E.2d 124 (2d Dist. 1975) --§§ 2 10[c]
People v. Mayhall, 291 Ill. App. 3d 650, 225 Ill. Dec. 699, 684 N.E.2d 174 (5th Dist. 1997) --§ 11[a]
People v. Neville, 42 Ill. App. 3d 9, 355 N.E.2d 179 (4th Dist. 1976) --§ 3
People v. Pronger, 48 Ill. App. 2d 477, 199 N.E.2d 239 (1st Dist. 1964) --§ 11[a]
People v. Steffens, 208 Ill. App. 3d 252, 153 Ill. Dec. 135, 566 N.E.2d 985 (4th Dist. 1991) --§§ 3 8

INDIANA

Indiana Code Ann. 9-1-5-3 See --§ 12

Payne v. State, 396 N.E.2d 439 (Ind. Ct. App. 1st Dist. 1979) --§ 12

KANSAS

Kansas Stat. Ann. 8-116(b) See --§§ 10[a] 10[c]

State v. Holland, 141 Kan. 307, 40 P.2d 469 (1935) --§§ 10[a] 10[c]

LOUISIANA

Louisiana Rev. Stat. Ann. 14:207 See --§ 11[c]

State v. Slaughter, 451 So. 2d 59 (La. Ct. App. 4th Cir. 1984) --§§ 2 11[c]

MARYLAND

Maryland Ann. Code art. 27, 389 (b) See --§ 10[c]
Maryland Ann. Code art. 66 1/2, 73 See --§§ 10[a] 10[c]

Greenway v. State, 8 Md. App. 194, 259 A.2d 89 (1969) --§§ 2 10[a] 10[c]
Spears v. State, 38 Md. App. 700, 382 A.2d 616 (1978) --§ 10[c]

MASSACHUSETTS

Massachusetts Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 266, 139(b)-(c) See --§ 10[c]

Com. v. Gonsalves, 56 Mass. App. Ct. 506, 778 N.E.2d 997 (2002) --§ 10[c]
Com. v. Perreault, 13 Mass. App. Ct. 1072, 435 N.E.2d 635 (1982) --§ 10[c]

MICHIGAN

Michigan Comp. Laws Ann. 750.415(1) See --§§ 7[a] 17
Michigan Comp. Laws Ann. 750.415(2) See --§§ 6 7 11[c]
Michigan Comp. Laws Ann. 750.415(3) See --§§ 6 11[c] 17

People v. Battle, 161 Mich. App. 99, 409 N.W.2d 739 (1987) --§ 6
People v. Brooks, 405 Mich. 225, 274 N.W.2d 430 (1979) --§ 17
People v. Coon, 200 Mich. App. 244, 503 N.W.2d 746 (1993) --§ 11[c]
People v. Griffis, 218 Mich. App. 95, 553 N.W.2d 642 (1996) --§ 7
People v. Oxendine, 201 Mich. App. 372, 506 N.W.2d 885 (1993) --§ 7[a]
People v. Venticinque, 459 Mich. 90, 586 N.W.2d 732 (1998) --§ 11[c]
People v. Wilson, 257 Mich. App. 337, 668 N.W.2d 371 (2003) --§ 15

MISSOURI

Missouri Ann. Stat. 301.390.1 See --§ 10[c]
Missouri Ann. Stat. 301.390.1, 301.390.6 See --§ 13
Missouri Rev. Stat. 301.390 See --§§ 3 10[a] 12[a]
Missouri Rev. Stat. 301.390.1 See --§ 10[c]
Missouri Rev. Stat. 301.390.1, 301.390.6 See --§ 10
Missouri Rev. Stat. 301.400 See --§ 12[a]

State v. Friedman, 412 S.W.2d 171 (Mo. 1967) --§ 12[a]
State v. Smith, 972 S.W.2d 476, 107 A.L.R.5th 791 (Mo. Ct. App. W.D. 1998) --§ 10
State v. Sollars, 706 S.W.2d 485 (Mo. Ct. App. W.D. 1986) --§§ 10[a] 10[c] 12[a]
State v. Sollars, 747 S.W.2d 134 (Mo. 1988) --§ 3
State v. Supinski, 779 S.W.2d 258 (Mo. Ct. App. W.D. 1989) --§§ 10[c] 13
State v. Wakefield, 682 S.W.2d 136 (Mo. Ct. App. S.D. 1984) --§ 12[a]
State v. Wakefield, 712 S.W.2d 442 (Mo. Ct. App. S.D. 1986) --§ 12[a]

NEW JERSEY

New Jersey Stat. Ann. 2C:17-6(b) See --§§ 3 9 18[a]
New Jersey Stat. Ann. 2C:43-2c See --§ 19
New Jersey Stat. Ann. 39:10-7 See --§ 19

State v. Davis, 244 N.J. Super. 180, 581 A.2d 1333 (App. Div. 1990) --§§ 2 3 18[a]
State v. Gross, 225 N.J. Super. 28, 541 A.2d 714 (App. Div. 1988) --§ 19
State v. Pontelandolfo, 227 N.J. Super. 419, 547 A.2d 738 (Law Div. 1988) --§ 9

NEW YORK

New York Penal Law 170.70 See --§§ 4 5
New York Penal Law 170.70(1) See --§ 13
New York Penal Law 170.70(2) See --§ 15
New York Penal Law 170.70(3) See --§ 10[d]
New York Penal Law 436-a See --§ 15
New York Veh. & Traf. Law 65 See --§ 14

People v. Codrington, 165 Misc. 2d 214, 629 N.Y.S.2d 369 (City Crim. Ct. 1995) --§ 13
People v. Congress Radio, 133 Misc. 542, 232 N.Y.S. 647 (Gen. Sess. 1929), aff'd without published op, 251 N.Y. 572, 168 N.E. 432 (1929) --§ 15
People v. Giese, 95 Misc. 2d 792, 408 N.Y.S.2d 693 (Sup 1978), order aff'd without published op, 68 A.D.2d 1019, 414 N.Y.S.2d 947 (2d Dep't 1979) --§ 5
People v. McCabe, 157 Misc. 2d 373, 596 N.Y.S.2d 1021 (City Crim. Ct. 1993) --§ 10[d]
People v. Silver, 39 N.Y.2d 99, 382 N.Y.S.2d 972, 346 N.E.2d 811 (1976) --§ 4
People v. Sullivan, 137 Misc. 2d 909, 522 N.Y.S.2d 758 (Sup. Ct. 1987) --§ 15
People v. Von Werne, 41 N.Y.2d 584, 394 N.Y.S.2d 183, 362 N.E.2d 982 (1977) --§§ 2 10[d]
People, on Complaint of Shanley, v. Stowers, 259 A.D. 528, 19 N.Y.S.2d 921 (1st Dep't 1940) --§ 14

NORTH CAROLINA

North Carolina Gen. Stat. 20-109(b)(1) See --§ 16

State v. Wyrick, 35 N.C. App. 352, 241 S.E.2d 355 (1978) --§ 16

OHIO

Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 4549.62(A) See --§ 11[c]
Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 4549.62(D) See --§ 10[c]
Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 4549.62(D)(1) See --§§ 3 10[a] 10[c] 10[d] 11 12 18[a] 18
Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 4549.62(D)(4) See --§ 18[a]
Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 4549.62(D)(4)(a) See --§ 18

Forfeiture of 1980 Fruehauf Forty-foot Flatbed Trailer, 49 Ohio App. 3d 68, 550 N.E.2d 188 (6th Dist. Lucas County 1988) --§ 10[c]
Emanuele v. City of Akron, 1989 WL 84033 (Ohio Ct. App. 9th Dist. Summit County 1989) --§ 10[a]
State v. Adams, 1991 WL 216874 (Ohio Ct. App. 3d Dist. Union County 1991) --§ 3
State v. Banks, 1991 WL 227028 (Ohio Ct. App. 2d Dist. Montgomery County 1991), jurisdictional motion overruled, 62 Ohio St. 3d 1471, 580 N.E.2d 1101 (1991) --§ 10[c]
State v. Bradley, 1997 WL 691510 (Ohio Ct. App. 2d Dist. Champaign County 1997) --§§ 10[c] 11[c] 18
State v. Halczyszak, 1990 WL 32605 (Ohio Ct. App. 8th Dist. Cuyahoga County 1990) --§ 10[c]
State v. Lawson, 1989 WL 18948 (Ohio Ct. App. 8th Dist. Cuyahoga County 1989) --§§ 2 10[c]
State v. McClain, 1987 WL 6702 (Ohio Ct. App. 12th Dist. Warren County 1987) --§§ 10[d] 18
State v. Ribovich, 1987 WL 14438 (Ohio Ct. App. 9th Dist. Medina County 1987) --§ 10[c]
State v. Rosebrook, 1988 WL 87139 (Ohio Ct. App. 3d Dist. Marion County 1988), cause dismissed, 41 Ohio St. 3d 703, 534 N.E.2d 1202 (1989) --§§ 3 10[a] 10[c] 10[d] 12
State v. Rosebrook, 1991 WL 216869 (Ohio Ct. App. 3d Dist. Union County 1991) --§ 3
State v. Shifflett, 1993 WL 372233 (Ohio Ct. App. 2d Dist. Montgomery County 1993), dismissed, jurisdictional motion overruled, 69 Ohio St. 3d 1477, 634 N.E.2d 1024 (1994) --§§ 11 18
State v. Shifflett, 1994 WL 37277 (Ohio Ct. App. 2d Dist. Montgomery County 1994), dismissed, jurisdictional motion overruled, 69 Ohio St. 3d 1477, 634 N.E.2d 1024 (1994) --§§ 2 18[a]

OKLAHOMA

Oklahoma Stat. Ann. tit. 47, 1503(C)(1) See --§§ 3 11

State v. Johnson, 1992 OK CR 72, 877 P.2d 1136 (Okla. Crim. App. 1992) --§§ 3 11

PENNSYLVANIA

75 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. 7102(b), 7103(b) See --§ 11[c]
75 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. 7103 See --§ 10[c]
75 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. 7103(a) See --§ 10[d]
75 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. 7103(b) See --§ 10[d]
Pennsylvania Stat. Ann. tit. 75, 301 See --§§ 10[c] 10[d]

Com. v. Cecchini, 315 Pa. Super. 153, 461 A.2d 843 (1983) --§ 10[d]
Com. v. Grabowski, 306 Pa. Super. 483, 452 A.2d 827 (1982) --§ 10[c]
Com. v. Lowry, 385 Pa. Super. 236, 560 A.2d 781 (1989) --§ 11[c]
Com. v. Milewski, 340 Pa. Super. 226, 489 A.2d 925 (1985) --§ 10[d]
Com. v. Stevenson, 242 Pa. Super. 31, 363 A.2d 1144 (1976) --§ 10[c]
Com. v. Unkrich, 142 Pa. Super. 591, 16 A.2d 737 (1940) --§§ 10[a] 10[c] 10[d]
Com. v. White, 259 Pa. Super. 397, 393 A.2d 886 (1978) --§ 10[d]

SOUTH DAKOTA

South Dakota Codified Laws 32-4-10 See --§ 10[a]

Soet v. State, 381 N.W.2d 285 (S.D. 1986) --§ 10[a]

TEXAS

Texas Penal Code Ann. 31.11(a)(2)(A) See --§ 10[c]

Austin v. State, 1995 WL 785161 (Tex. App. Dallas 1995) --§ 10[c]

VIRGINIA

Virginia Code Ann. 46.2-1075 See --§§ 10[c] 13

Stevens v. Commonwealth, 1995 WL 748632 (Va. Ct. App. 1995) --§ 10[c]
Viar v. Commonwealth, 1995 WL 464265 (Va. Ct. App. 1995) --§§ 10[c] 13

Is stamping or removing a VIN on an engine block or other part illegal?

It might be, according to this case:

The court held in Greenway v. State, 8 Md. App. 194, 259 A.2d 89 (1969), that there was sufficient evidence to sustain an automobile repairman's conviction, under Md. Ann. Code art. 66 1/2, § 73 (1957), of possessing a vehicle knowing the engine VIN had been defaced for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the identity of the vehicle. While the evidence clearly showed that the repairman had in his possession a vehicle containing an engine which he admitted had been removed from another vehicle and whose VIN had been covered by a bead of weld, it was not shown that he ever had direct contact with the engine, either in purchasing it, receiving it after it was purchased, or removing it from one car and installing it in the other. Nevertheless, the court recognized that the repairman admitted he knew the provisions of the statute and therefore the court held that he deliberately "shut his eyes" so he would not have knowledge that the VIN on the engine in his possession had been defaced. The court noted that the engine was easily accessible to him while in his possession and it was immaterial, in the face of the statute, that engine numbers may not be required on certificates of title and that the statute does not provide specifically that failure to make a reasonable inspection means knowledge. He thus acted at his peril, concluded the court, and could be deemed as having "knowledge" of the fact that the engine VIN was defaced.

BE CAREFUL, EVERYONE. WITH THE VALUE OF OUR CARS RISING, SUCH CONDUCT COULD BE CONSTRUED AS MALICIOUS AND FRAUDULENT.

Sam Mamola, J.D.
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