Become a Member: Get Ad-Free Access to 3,000+ Reviews, Guides, & More

Motorcycle theft running rampant

victoria nsw cops police Horror bike crashes in two states rider deaths

Police in two states have seized 11 stolen motorbikes under investigations into motor vehicle theft and rebirthing as motorbike theft runs rampant across the nation.

Two of the bikes were seized in Deer Park, north-west Melbourne, and nine in Western Sydney after a police pursuit of an unlicensed rider.

In Victoria, Vehicle Crime Squad detectives investigating theft and rebirthing in the North West Melbourne area as part of Operation Unwanted this morning (30 April 2019) executed warrants at three private properties on Robinsons Road, Deer Park. A 37-year-old man from Point Cook is “assisting police with their enquiries”.

Unlicensed rider

NSW Police have also today charged a western Sydney man after he allegedly rode a stolen motorbike in Oxley Park last Friday (26 April 2019).

Officers from North West Metropolitan Region Operational Support Group attempted to pull the rider over, but he failed to stop and a pursuit was initiated.

“Due to the erratic behaviour and speed of the bike the pursuit was terminated within minutes,” NSW Police say.

An investigation was immediately launched, and officers attended a unit on Adelaide Street, Oxley Park, where police allegedly seized four stolen trail bikes.

Police have now arrested and charged a 28-year-old Oxley Park man with a police pursuit, riding while a licence was refused, riding a motorcycle without the consent of the owner, speeding and dangerous riding.

Further investigations led police to a unit on Marsden Street, St Marys, where the stolen motorbike he was riding was found along with four more stolen motorbikes.

All the motorcycles were seized and inquiries into their ownership continue.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers onlineor phone 1800 333 000. Information is treated in confidence and the public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

Rampant theft

rampant theft
NMVTRC map shows motorcycle theft hotspots in 2018

Motorcycle theft is running rampant throughout Australia, according to the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council.

Thefts increased by 597 (7.3%) last year to a total of 8746 with a recovery rate of just 47%.

Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hrambanis says the biggest rises in motorcycle theft were in NSW and Queensland.

The Council is shortly expected to release a review of the amended NSW Crimes Act which introduced a new offence of knowingly facilitating a rebirthing activity carried out on an organised basis.

It was designed to deter thieves by applying tougher penalties to any and all members in a theft network involved in stealing your motorcycle or car with tougher penalties.

While it seemed a good idea at the time, the figures seem to show it is not working.

We will have a report on the review in coming weeks.

Theft by state

State or Territory 2017 2018 % change
Thefts Thefts
ACT 126
NSW 1679
NT 126
QLD 1510
SA 521
TAS 122
VIC 2013
WA 2052
AUS 8149 100.0 8746 100.0 7.3% 

Opportunistic theft

“In most cases vehicle theft is almost always opportunistic, with the vehicle being stolen for short-term use and later recovered (78% in Queensland),” Caitlin says.

Unlike most modern cars which have self-alarming engine immobilisers, many motorcycles need owners to lock them with a chain, disc lock or an alarm switch.

She says they can easily be stolen without requiring any keys.

“Motorcycles have their own set of challenges due to their ease of portability, the high demand for parts and poor identification,” she says.

“Two in three motorcycles are also stolen from the home, making home security, protecting keys and considerations of where the bike is stored also important.

“In Queensland, around a quarter of all bikes stolen are off-road bikes, which often makes recovery difficult as they are not subject to a registration system.”

Theft hotspots

Motorcycle theft hot spots keyring thieves miserly CCTV black friday thefts
Click here to buy your “warning” keyring

Bike theft is rampant in South East Queensland with Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Logan and Moreton Bay all in the top 10 local authority regions for bike theft.

State or Territory LGA 2014 2018 % change
QLD Brisbane (City) 292 435 49.0% 
VIC Melbourne (City) 134 246 83.6% 
QLD Gold Coast (City) 169 244 44.4% 
QLD Logan (City) 118 159 34.7% 
WA Swan (City) 119 154 29.4% 
NSW Sydney (City) 115 151 31.3% 
WA Stirling (City) 153 147 -3.9% 
VIC Port Phillip (City) 62 136 119.4% 
QLD Moreton Bay (Regional Council) 149 132 -11.4% 
NSW Newcastle (City) 44 130 195.5% 

Click here to find out what can be done to keep your bike safe from thieves.