Attaching Wrong Plates to Conceal Identity

Motor vehicle offenses are taken very seriously in Massachusetts in an effort to police the roadways and provide safe travels for residents and those visiting. Attaching Wrong Motor Vehicle Plates to Conceal Identity is a misdemeanor criminal traffic offense in Massachusetts as defined under Section 23 of Chapter 90 of our General Laws. Unlike a minor traffic violation, criminal traffic offenses require an appearance to be made in front of a judge at an arraignment. Convicted offenders of this crime face surmountable fines, probation, license suspension, and points on your driving record. For these reasons, it is essential that you consult with a Boston-area criminal defense attorney with specialized knowledge of Massachusetts’s motor vehicle laws.

M.G.L. c. 90 § 23 details that any individual who provides a police officer with a license issued to another person with intent to conceal his identity shall be punishable under the law. A first offense conviction shall result in the following penalties:
  • A fine ranging from $500 to $1,000 or
  • Imprisonment for not more than 10 days, or 
  • Both fine and imprisonment.

Any second or subsequent offense shall result in the following penalties:

  • Minimum mandatory imprisonment for 60 days, or no more than 1 year.

Under M.G.L. c. 90 § 23, any individual who attaches or allows a motor vehicle number plate assigned to another motor vehicle or trailer to be attached, or any individual who obscures or permits the figures on any number plate attached to any motor vehicle or trailer to be obscured, or who fails to properly display the number plate and the register number on a motor vehicle or trailer with intent to conceal the identity of such motor vehicle or trailer, shall also be punishable by this law. A convicted offender shall face the following penalties:

  • A fine of not more than $100 or
  • Imprisonment for not more than 10 days, or 
  • Both fine and imprisonment.
In order to be found guilty of Attaching Wrong Plates to Conceal Identity, the Commonwealth must be able to prove three elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt:
  1. The defendant attached the license plate in question to a motor vehicle, or permitted it to be attached;
  2. The license plate in question was not assigned by the Registry of Motor Vehicles to that particular vehicle; and
  3. The defendant did so with the intent to conceal the identity of that motor vehicle.
Traffic charges must be taken as seriously as any other criminal charges, especially when a traffic offense rises to the level of a misdemeanor or felony, which carry harsh penalties for those convicted. If you have been charged with a traffic-related misdemeanor or felony, the best place to start is to speak with an experienced motor vehicle criminal traffic defense attorney who will defend you anywhere in Massachusetts.

Vigilant Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Defense Lawyer
Patrick J. Murphy, Esq. is a Boston, Massachusetts criminal motor vehicle violations defense lawyer with nearly 20 years of experience defending clients accused of ordinary and serious motor vehicle crimes. If you have been charged with a misdemeanor of felony motor vehicle offense in Boston or any city or town in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you need an experienced and aggressive criminal defense lawyer with a successful record of representing people charged with all motor vehicle offenses. At the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy we are fully prepared to fight any motor vehicle offense charge and we provide all clients with professional, expert legal representation. Call Attorney Patrick J. Murphy today for a free initial consultation at 617-367-0450 or email him directly using our online contact form.
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