Under fire from city officials and conservative activists, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck on Thursday defended his controversial plan to stop the immediate impounding of vehicles of unlicensed drivers, reports the Los Angeles Daily News.

"If I had any inkling that what we were doing is illegal or a hazard to the public, then I wouldn't do it," Beck said, adding that the plan was crafted after meetings with immigration rights groups and local prosecutorial agencies.

Under Beck's proposed new policy, which comes before the Police Commission on Feb. 14, an unlicensed driver who is stopped by police would not be subject to an immediate 30-day impound on a first offense.

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