PORTUGUESE TRAFFIC police have warned motorists against purchasing do-it-yourself radar detector kits over the internet.
Speeding motorists have been able to buy the police speed trap detectors illegally for some years, but recent clampdowns on road traffic infringements like speeding by both the GNR traffic police nationally and Polícia Judiciaria (PJ) in Lisbon have seen more of the machines in cars in the past 12 months.
Radar detectors are getting easier and easier to get hold of on the internet, with several sites not only warning of the locations of ‘hidden’ speed traps in every town across Portugal, but also offering radar detectors for sale!
A simple internet search on Google or Yahoo by typing in Detectores de Radar reveals many sites in English and Portuguese offering the devices for sale from as little as 125 euros up to 400 euros.
“Despite being illegal, there are those that risk buying them over the internet to avoid getting caught for speeding and incurring a fine,” said Lourenço da Silva from the GNR’s Brigada da Trânsito, traffic police.
Messages are sent to computer e-mail addresses with tags such as: Defenda-se agora, defend yourself now, evite os controlos de velocidade, avoid speed traps or conserve a sua carta de condução, keep your driving license, being just some of the slogans appearing on sites and mails selling detectors, which capture police radar signals.
“If you get caught with one you will get the detector confiscated and go to court,” said da Silva.
Fines for being caught with an internet devices can range from 2,473 euros to 29,000 euros in the case for illegal vendors.
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