Demerit point rort charges
Caught on camera: People have been charged over demerit point rorts. Picture: The West Australian

More than 20 people have been charged with trying to cheat WA's demerit point system by getting other drivers to take responsibility for their traffic offences.

The alleged rort was discovered in a review of more than 200,000 red light and speed camera fines after a man was caught in November advertising online for someone to take his speeding demerit points for him.

Those charged include an 84-year-old woman who police claim was desperate to keep her licence.

Others had terrible driving records dating back years and were trying to avoid yet another ban.

"We have serial dangerous drivers who should have had their licences suspended but continue to drive and offend," Assistant Commissioner Nick Anticich alleged.

"In some cases, we've had multiple offences that should not have occurred because that person should not have been driving."

He said demerit points gave drivers more than enough chances to correct their behaviour and serial offenders cheating the system were putting lives at risk.

A 23-year-old woman has already been fined $500 after pleading guilty to misleading police.

She could not be prosecuted for the original speeding offence because of a 12-month statute of limitations for traffic offences.

But the magistrate used his discretionary sentencing powers to ban her from driving for three months anyway.

Others accused of wilfully misleading police will face court this month.

They will also face the original traffic charges and accrue the demerit points if the offence was not more than a year ago.

Police did not reveal how many infringements under review had been audited but expect more charges.

Mr Anticich said it was foolish that some people concerned about their livelihoods tried to cheat to keep their licence and now faced a criminal record instead of a traffic fine.

People who accepted other drivers' penalties were also committing an offence and could face prosecution.

Police Minister Liza Harvey said she could not condone people who cheated the system and was pleased to see the early results from the crackdown.

The West Australian

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