A Southport businessman has been handed down a two-year suspended sentence after being found guilty of supplying fraudulent number plates.
Andrew Shaw printed 13,277 licence plates in a two-year period without following strict guidelines in doing so.
The 39-year-old, who operated out of Sunny Road in Southport, allegedly made lb300,000 in profit since he began trading in 2011.
Current law requires all suppliers of acrylic number plates to ask for proof of identity and right to display the registration mark from customers before supplying, but Mr Shaw did not ask for this evidence.
Shaw denied fraud charges but was found guilty and was given a two-year suspended jail sentence, a three-month curfew, 300 hours of community service and a six-month driving ban as a result.
Judge, Mr Recorder Ryan, said: “I accept you had no intention to put false number plates in the hands of the criminal fraternity,” in reference to Shaw.
“You were an inefficient and lazy businessman that chose to take a shortcut.”
An ex-rally driver brought Shaw’s business to the attention of the police after noticing the sender’s address did not match the address stated on the website.
Shaw had specified a false address in County Limerick as his location of operation, stating that he did so to avoid people knocking on his door.
By Eric Craggs