Crime

Melbourne Police Auctions 101: Everything You Need To Know

Looking for a bargain? Check out your nearest police auction!

From affordable designer steals to high-quality thrifting, there are plenty of ways to shop without spending big bucks. One budget-friendly method that most people don’t know about? Picking up affordable items at police auctions in Victoria!

This guide will help you understand how police or sheriff auctions work, what kinds of items you can usually find at these auctions, and the best places to check out in Melbourne.

RELATED: The mistake costing Aussie travellers hundreds

What Are Police Auctions? Where Do The Items For The Auction Come From?

Police auctions function very similarly to regular auctions, except the items being sold are seized, repossessed, unclaimed, or lost property. 

There are several circumstances under which Victoria Police can take and sell your things. If the property or asset was used in a crime, owned by someone who has committed a crime, or was purchased using ill-gotten wealth, the police have the right to seize it. Police may also take items as ‘payment’ for any outstanding court debts or fines.

The items are then sold off at in-person or online auctions. The police force may choose to sell the items themselves or contact a third-party auctioneer to handle the sale.

An auctioneer holding a gavel at an auction
(Credit: Getty)

What Are The Most Common Kinds Of Items At Government Auctions?

There’s almost no limit to what items can be seized and sold by the government. Car auctions and motorcycle auctions are popular, especially since vehicles are the most commonly seized property.

Furniture, clothes, jewellery, and fine art are less common, but still relatively easy to find. Some auctioneers may specialise in a certain type of item, but there are also mixed-category auctions as well.

A gavel and car keys on a sounding block against a wooden table
(Credit: Getty)

What Happens If You Are The Owner Of The Auctioned Item/s?

If your property was taken as payment for court-mandated debt, you can retrieve it by paying off the fine. If it’s a lost item, you need to contact police as soon as possible, or else you risk it being auctioned off.

The only circumstance in which you have no claim over the item is if it was used to commit a crime or bought using illegally obtained funds. When in doubt, call the sheriff’s office and ask!

The Top Police Auctions In Melbourne, Australia

First State Auctions

Where: Depends on the auction

What you can buy: Watches, precious gems, jewellery, and others

Check the website for upcoming auctions

Check out First State Auctions’ website here.

Pickles Auctions

Where: Pickles Auctions website (online)

What you can buy: Office equipment, vehicles, heavy machinery, and others

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out Pickles Auctions’ website here.

All Bids

Where: All Bids website (online)

What you can buy: Alcohol, electronic devices, cameras, vehicles, tools & equipment, jewellery, and others

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out All Bids’ website here.

Breen Auction Group

Where: Footscray

What you can buy: Alcohol, electronic devices, tools & equipment, clothes, furniture, and others

Upcoming auctions: December 17

Check out Breen Auction Group’s website here.

Leonard Joel Specialist Auctioneers

Where: Depends on the auction

What you can buy: Paintings, sculptures, fine art, collectible items, jewellery, watches, furniture, and others

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out Leonard Joel Specialist Auctioneers’ website here.

Sheriff Victoria

Where: eBay (online) and Blackburn

What you can buy: Vehicles and others

Upcoming auctions: Check this website for in-person auction dates and the eBay page

Check out Sheriff Victoria’s website here.

Grays Online Victoria

Where: Grays Online Victoria website (online)

What you can buy: Alcohol, electronic devices, tools & equipment, vehicles, fine art, jewellery, and others

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out Grays Online Victoria’s website here.

Abbey’s Auctions

Where: Depends on the auction

What you can buy: Electronic devices, cameras, fine art, jewellery, furniture, and others

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out Abbey’s Auctions’ website here.

Manheim

Where: Manheim website (online) or Altona North

What you can buy: Equipment and vehicles

Upcoming auctions: Check the website for ongoing auctions

Check out Manheim’s website here.

Sold To The Highest Bidder

Whether you’re looking for police car auctions, computer auctions, or something else entirely, checking out your nearby police auction is a great way to snag high-quality items at a reduced price. If you miss one, don’t worry – there’s always another auction date ‘round the corner.

RELATED: The 10 Most Dangerous Places in the World

Related stories