Officers shall follow standardized procedures when
handling cases of the fraudulent use of license plates.
A. Persons are in violation of Section 249 11,
Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS), when they:
1. Knowingly attach to and use on any vehicle,
plates not furnished in accordance with Sections
249 1 through 249 13 or 286 53, HRS; or
2. Fraudulently use such number plates upon
any vehicle other than the one for which the
number plates were issued; or
3. Molest or disturb any vehicle which has been
seized pursuant to Sections 249 1 through 249 13, HRS; or
4. Knowingly use a motor vehicle, the tax upon
which is delinquent, upon public highways of this state.
B. In accordance with Section 249 11, HRS, a
director of finance shall not issue a certificate
of registration and/or license number plates to
any person who has not paid the tax required by
Sections 249 1 through 249 13, HRS.
C. The penalty for violation of any of the
provisions of the above shall be a fine of not more than $500.
A. Parked Vehicles With Fraudulent License Plates
1. Upon discovery that a parked vehicle is on
public property in violation of Section 249 11, HRS,
the responsible officer will recover the license
plates and submit them into evidence. The officer
will initiate a miscellaneous crime report.
2. The vehicle will be marked on the front
windshield with “Plates Recovered” and include
the date, officer’s initials, and officer’s identification number.
3. The initiating officer shall make an attempt
to locate the registered owner of the parked vehicle
that is in violation of Section 249 11, HRS.
a. If the registered owner or person having
custody and control of the vehicle is located or
can be identified, and has knowingly furnished
plates not in accordance with this law, then the
owner or person having custody and control of the
vehicle is to be cited pursuant to Section 249 11, HRS.
b. If the registered owner or person having
custody and control of the vehicle cannot be
located and the elements of Section 249 11, HRS,
have not been established, do not cite. Leave the
case pending follow up by the Traffic Division.
4. The officer will check the plates and
vehicle to determine if they are stolen and
also check for a registration update. Initiate
an appropriate case, if necessary. If the
vehicle is in violation of other sections of the
HRS, cite for the appropriate section.
5. The officer will mark the vehicle as
abandoned (if appropriate) and complete the
abandoned vehicle complaint e-form for forwarding
to the Motor Vehicle Control Section, Department
of Customer Services, for investigation and disposition.
6. Section 15 13.9, Traffic Code of the
City and County of Honolulu, authorizes officers
and employees of the Honolulu Police Department
and the Department of Customer Services to
remove or cause to be removed any vehicle which
has been left unattended or parked on a public
street, road, or highway; and the vehicle has
one or more of the following:
a. No valid vehicle registration emblem or
an expired vehicle registration emblem;
b. No valid sticker affixed certifying a
certificate of inspection as required in
Section 286 26, HRS, or an expired certificate
of inspection sticker; or
c. No valid license plates.
For purposes of this paragraph: “Public street,
roadway, or highway” includes the entire width
(including berm or shoulder) of every road, alley,
street, way, lane, trail, highway, bikeway, or
bridge when any part thereof is open for use by the public.
B. Moving Vehicles
If a moving vehicle is in violation of Section
249 11, HRS, the officer shall ensure that the
vehicle is legally parked and take the following
1. Check the vehicle registration. If the
driver is unable to produce the vehicle
registration, radio dispatch for the information.
Check the license plates and vehicle identification
number to determine if the vehicle or plates have
been reported stolen.
2. Attempt to determine if the driver has
knowledge of the fraudulent license plates. If
it is determined that the driver has knowledge of
the fraudulent license plates and the elements of
Section 249-11, HRS, can be shown:
a. Recover the fraudulent license plates and submit into evidence;
b. Mark the vehicle on the front windshield with
“Plates Recovered” and include the date, officer’s
initials, and officer’s identification number;
c. Cite the driver for Fraudulent Use of License
Plates and any other applicable violation of the HRS;
d. Submit a Miscellaneous Crime Report. If the
driver being cited is not the registered owner,
information on the last registered owner must be
included in the report;
e. If other facts are present, such as stolen
plates, initiate the appropriate case;
f. Advise the operator that if the vehicle is
not removed within 24 hours from the public highway,
it shall be subject to removal as an abandoned vehicle
in accordance with Section 15 13.9, Traffic Code of
the City and County of Honolulu; and
g. Mark the vehicle as abandoned if left over
24 hours and follow the prescribed procedure.
3. The driver of the vehicle shall not be
arrested for a traffic infraction violating
Section 249 11, HRS. When unable to adequately
identify the registered owner of the vehicle,
the driver may be arrested for Section 286 102,
HRS, if unable to produce adequate identification
to establish that he or she is a licensed driver.
When the driver is arrested for the above offense,
the traffic infraction violating Section 249 11,
HRS, shall be included in the arrest report with
its own police report number. Disposition of this
infraction shall be left pending action by the
Department of the Prosecuting Attorney.