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Charges Laid Over Braaap Motorcycles Rebirthing Scandal

Federal Government Suspends Identification Plate approvals

Charges Laid Over Braaap Motorcycles Rebirthing Scandal

Braaap Motorcycles, one of Tasmania’s most highly acclaimed startup businesses, is in a spectacular fall from grace as more information and allegations surface regarding the company’s alleged illegal and fraudulent activities.

Charges Laid Over Braaap Motorcycles Rebirthing ScandalFounder and Chief Executive, Brad Smith, was charged on Thursday with four counts of fraud.

General Manager Toby Wilkin was also charged last Wednesday with four counts of fraud and one count of knowingly dealing with the proceeds of crime.

The charges have been laid after an 8 month investigation by the New South Wales Police force.
According to a report in the Launceston “Examiner” newspaper, NSW detectives allege Mr Smith and Mr Wilkin had a joint criminal enterprise that saw up to 85 ST-250 model motorcycles “rebirthed” and resold - 35 of which were allegedly sold in NSW, and that the pair were part of a well organised “syndicate” to scratch off and replace the serial numbers of the motorcycles owned by a NSW company.

Police carried out simultaneous raids on Braaap’s Launceston, Hobart and Melbourne premises on Wednesday and seized a punch stamp set, compliance labels, computers, and documentation.

Mr Smith is denying the charges laid against himself and Mr Wilkin, and the pair will face court in Sydney on the 18th August.

The first hint of trouble for the company came last month when a recall was issued through the ACCC for four Braaap models.

The recalls were for seemingly insignificant labelling issues, and at the time Brad Smith said “I think most people will come to the conclusion that it’s trivial.”

Charges Laid Over Braaap Motorcycles Rebirthing ScandalThe company was then hit with a Federal Government sanction about two weeks later, and five of its Identification Plate approvals were “temporarily suspended”.

That sanction prevents Braaap from plating any vehicles from 24th June, 2016, effectively stopping the company from importing and selling future shipments.

The suspension for the Braaap ST-250 model was lifted on the 15th July, but all others still remain in place.

Smith was named Australian Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2008, Young Australian of the Year for Tasmania in 2010 and Braaap has won the Australian Ret­ailers Association’s Small Business of the Year award four times.

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About Steve McDowall 329 Articles
Steve is the team’s motorcycle writer and contributes to the podcast each week. He started his “on air” career as a guest on 4BC where he met Joel, and has been with Behind the Wheel now for over 6 years. Steve’s fascination for anything with wheels and an engine started as a child and even though he still loves his cars, he found his true passion was with motorcycles. He is also an accredited rider trainer, consultant and coach. Check out Steve’s website – motorcyclelife.com.au
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