To erase a stolen car’s Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs) and replace them with new numbers. Also: revin.
During the course of the undercover work, Sherriff said, Dhaliwal told Kelly how the organization operated. He said he was capable of changing the on- board computer of stolen vehicles; was prepared to sell Kelly VIN packages for $1,500 that could be manufactured in Montreal in hours; and had a man who could install a VIN package for a Cherokee, reprogram its computer, “revin” its hidden secondary serial number and produce a “clean registration” for $4, 000.
—Bob Mitchell, “Court convists leader of stolen vehicle ring,” The Toronto Star, May 29, 2001
“The donor vehicle was there for the sole purpose of providing a VIN for the stolen Mustang. The number would be removed. The car would be crushed,” he testified.
Clarke heard the procedure is known in police circles as “reVIN-ing” a vehicle to obscure its origins.
—Paul Legall, “ Defence wants evidence out: Police didn’t have warrant to search auto shop: lawyer,” Hamilton Spectator (Ontario, Canada), October 1, 1998
Although auto theft has dropped from the record high of 147,123 in 1990, the city still holds the second-highest vehicle theft rate in the country. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, one of every 29 registered vehicles is stolen.
“When you say auto theft is down, it’s misleading,” said Rischert. “The business of using stolen cars for parts, reVINing them and selling them is thriving because everything is the bottom line. The markup on stolen cars can be as high as 1,000%.”
—Patrice O’Shaugnessy, “The choppin’ block,” Daily News (New York), February 11, 1996