A Wellington woman was one of two people found in an unregistered car and then convicted in Orange Local Court after refusing to identify the driver.
Neither Dwayne John Ah-See, 34, of Dalton Street, and Kiah Peckham, 28, of Clive Street, Wellington, were present in court.
They had been charged with failing to give information leading to the identification of a driver who was alleged to have committed an offence while driving.
Magistrate David Day however, found their offences to be proved after reviewing a summary of the offences provided by the police.
According to court documents, police from Orange highway patrol were travelling south on Anson Street near Brendon Sturgeon Oval on July 5 this year and passed a sedan that was travelling north.
This vehicle's registration had expired in 2021.
When police caught up to the car they found it stopped by the side of the road at Douglas Place. Police saw Peckham in the front passenger seat and Ah-See in the backseat but no one in the driver's seat.
They told the police the driver had "just bolted" up Douglas Place. The ignition key for the vehicle had been removed but was later found next to Peckham.
Both claimed not to know the driver of the vehicle and further police were summoned to attend but the driver could not be located.
A witness reported seeing a man run past their residence moments after police had stopped the car.
Peckham later claimed ownership of the vehicle saying she had picked it up from the "impound" at Dubbo a few days prior and Ah-See made it clear from the outset that he would not be "giving up" the identity of the driver.
Ah-See was told he might be committing an offence by refusing to supply information leading the driver's identification but he indicated that his safety may be compromised if he did and so refused to do so.
Peckham could not explain why she would allow a male she did not know to drive her vehicle and when questioned about where they had been heading she said it was to an unknown location the unknown male had wanted to attend. She conceded the vehicle was unregistered and said it had been a "mistake" to use it.
Mr Day said he was satisfied the offence was "made out" after reviewing the police summary, which would have been submitted if the case went to trial.
He was also given copies of the traffic records and criminal histories for both Ah-See and Peckham.
In Ah-See's case he said there were convictions for "a range of offences" including police pursuit and dangerous driving.
"He cannot escape conviction," Mr Day said.
He also fined Ah-See $550.
Mr Day also convicted Peckham but said, "she's got a less serious record than Dwayne".
He fined her $220.
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