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1976 South Carolina Code of Laws
Unannotated
Updated through the end of the 2004 Session

Disclaimer
This statutory database is current through the 2004 Regular Session of the South Carolina General Assembly. Changes to the statutes enacted by the 2005 General Assembly, which will convene in January 2005, will be incorporated as soon as possible. Some changes enacted by the 2005 General Assembly may take immediate effect. The State of South Carolina and the South Carolina Legislative Council make no warranty as to the accuracy of the data, and users rely on the data entirely at their own risk.

Title 16 - Crimes and Offenses

CHAPTER 21.

OFFENSES INVOLVING MOTOR VEHICLE TITLES

SECTION 16-21-10. Altering, forging or counterfeiting certificate of title, registration card or license plate; misrepresentation or concealment in application.

(A) It is unlawful for a person to:

(1) alter, forge, or counterfeit a certificate of title, registration card, or license plate;

(2) alter or forge an assignment of a certificate of title or an assignment or release of a security interest on a certificate of title or on a form the department prescribes;

(3) possess or use a certificate of title, registration card, or license plate, knowing it to have been altered, forged, or counterfeited; or

(4) use a false or fictitious name or address, make a material false statement, fail to disclose a security interest, or conceal any other material fact in an application for a certificate of title or for registration.

(B) A person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned not more than five years.

SECTION 16-21-20. Permitting misuse of certificate of title, registration card or license plate; failing to deliver certificate or application; fraudulent application.

A person is guilty of a misdemeanor who:

(1) with fraudulent intent, permits another to use or have possession of a certificate of title, registration card, or license plate who is not entitled to it;

(2) wilfully fails to mail or deliver a certificate of title or application to the department within forty-five days after the time required by Chapter 19 of Title 56;

(3) wilfully fails to deliver to his transferee a certificate of title within forty-five days after the time required by Chapter 19 of Title 56; or

(4) commits a fraud in an application for a title or registration.

SECTION 16-21-30. Lending certificate of title.

No person shall lend to another any certificate of title issued to him if the person desiring to borrow the certificate would not be entitled to the use thereof, nor shall any person knowingly permit the use of any such certificate by one not entitled thereto. Any violation of this section is a misdemeanor.

SECTION 16-21-40. Removing or falsifying identification number of vehicle or engine; buying, receiving or selling such vehicle or engine.

(A) A person who:

(1) wilfully removes or falsifies an identification number of a vehicle or an engine for a vehicle is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

(2) wilfully and with intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity of a vehicle or engine removes or falsifies an identification number of the vehicle or engine is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned not more than five years.

(3) buys, receives, possesses, sells, or disposes of a vehicle or an engine for a vehicle, knowing that an identification number of the vehicle or engine has been removed or falsified, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

(4) buys, receives, possesses, sells, or disposes of a vehicle or an engine for a vehicle, with knowledge that an identification number of the vehicle or engine has been removed or falsified and with intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity of the vehicle or engine, is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned not more than five years.

(B) An identification number may be placed on a vehicle or engine by its manufacturer in the regular course of business or placed or restored on a vehicle or engine by authority of the department without violating this section. An identification number so placed or restored is not falsified.

(C) As used in this section:

(1) "Identification number" includes an identifying number, serial number, engine number, or other distinguishing number or mark, placed on a vehicle or engine by its manufacturer or by authority of the department or in accordance with the laws of another state or country;

(2) "Remove" includes deface, cover, and destroy; and

(3) "Falsify" includes alter and forge.

SECTION 16-21-50. Removing or affixing license plates to conceal or misrepresent identity of vehicle or owner.

A person who removes a license plate from a vehicle or affixes to a vehicle a license plate not authorized by law for use on it, in either case with intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity of the vehicle or its owner, is guilty of a misdemeanor. As used in this section "remove" includes deface, cover and destroy.

SECTION 16-21-60. Use of vehicle without permission.

(A) It is unlawful for a person not entitled to possession of a vehicle to take, use, or drive a vehicle, without the consent of the owner and with intent to deprive him, temporarily or otherwise, of the vehicle or its possession.

A person who violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned not more than three years.

(B) But if the deprivation of the owner was for a temporary purpose only, unconnected with the commission of or intent to commit a crime other than the taking of the vehicle, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

SECTION 16-21-70. Use of bicycle or certain other vehicles without permission.

Whoever knowingly and wilfully shall take and use any bicycle or other vehicle, except as defined in Section 56-19-10, without the consent of the owner thereof, but without intent to steal such vehicle, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment for a period of not more than one year or both fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the court.

SECTION 16-21-80. Receiving, possessing, concealing, selling, or disposing of stolen vehicle.

A person not entitled to the possession of a vehicle who receives, possesses, conceals, sells, or disposes of it, knowing it to be stolen or converted under circumstances constituting a crime, is guilty of a:

(1) misdemeanor triable in magistrate's court if the value of the vehicle is one thousand dollars or less. Upon conviction, the person must be fined, imprisoned, or both, not more than is permitted by law without presentment or indictment by the grand jury;

(2) felony and upon conviction, must be fined in the discretion of the court or imprisoned not more than five years, or both, if the value of the vehicle is more than one thousand dollars but less than five thousand dollars;

(3) felony and upon conviction, must be fined in the discretion of the court or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both, if the value of the vehicle is five thousand dollars or more.

SECTION 16-21-90. Damaging or tampering with vehicle.

A person who, with intent and without right to do so, damages a vehicle or damages or removes any of its parts or components is guilty of a misdemeanor.

A person who, without right to do so and with intent to commit a crime, tampers with a vehicle or goes in or on it or works or attempts to work any of its parts or components or sets or attempts to set it in motion is guilty of a misdemeanor.

SECTION 16-21-100. False reports of stolen or converted vehicles.

A person who knowingly makes a false report of the theft or conversion of a vehicle to a peace officer or to the Department is guilty of a misdemeanor.

SECTION 16-21-110. Failing to report unclaimed vehicle in garage, repair shop and the like.

A person who fails to report a vehicle as unclaimed in accordance with Section 56-19-840 is guilty of a misdemeanor and punishable by a fine of not more than twenty-five dollars.

SECTION 16-21-120. Other violations.

A person is guilty of a misdemeanor who wilfully violates any other provision of Chapter 19 of Title 56, except as otherwise provided therein.

SECTION 16-21-130. Penalties.

A person who violates the provisions of this chapter, except as specifically provided, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days, or both.

SECTION 16-21-140. Accessories, aiders or abettors.

A person who, whether present or absent, aids, abets, induces, procures, or causes the commission of an act under a provision of this chapter is guilty of the principal offense and must be punished accordingly.

SECTION 16-21-150. Admissibility of evidence of prior similar acts.

In a prosecution for a crime specified in this chapter evidence that the defendant has committed a prior act or acts of the same kind is admissible to prove criminal intent or knowledge.





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