lorry

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fall off the back of a lorry

Of goods or merchandise, to be acquired by illegal or dubious means; to come into (someone's) possession without being paid for. Primarily heard in UK. Danny says he has several laptops and smartphones he wants to sell for cheap—sounds like they fell off the back of a lorry to me.
See also: back, fall, lorry, of, off

off the back of a lorry

Likely by illegal or dubious means. Said of the way something has been gotten. The American equivalent is "off the back of a truck." Primarily heard in UK. A: "Jake's been peddling a bunch of flat screens for a great price." A: "He probably got them off the back of a lorry. I wouldn't go for them, if I were you." Danny says he has several laptops and smartphones he wants to sell for cheap—sounds like they fell off the back of a lorry to me.
See also: back, lorry, of, off

fall off a lorry

Of goods or merchandise, to be acquired by illegal or dubious means; to come into (someone's) possession without being paid for. "Lorry" is a chiefly British term for a truck. Primarily heard in UK. Danny says he has several laptops and phones he wants to sell for cheap—sounds like they fell off a lorry to me.
See also: fall, lorry, off

fall off the back of a lorry

BRITISH, INFORMAL
If you say that goods have fallen off the back of a lorry, you mean that they are stolen goods. We bought some really excellent wine from a woman who clearly caught the bottles as they fell off the back of a lorry. Note: You can also say that you got or bought something off the back of a lorry. Pete once bought the boys a bicycle cheap off the back of a lorry.
See also: back, fall, lorry, of, off

fall off (the back of) a lorry

(of goods) be acquired in illegal or unspecified circumstances.
The traditional bogus excuse given to the police by someone caught in possession of stolen goods was that the items in question had ‘fallen off the back of a lorry’.
1991 Time Out People buy so much stolen stuff that…you can…buy a video in Dixons and take it round the corner to a pub, say it fell off the back of a lorry and get 50 quid more than it cost you.
See also: fall, lorry, off

off the ˌback of a ˈlorry

(British English, informal, humorous) goods that fell off the back of a lorry were probably stolen. People say or accept that they came ‘off the back of a lorry’ to avoid saying or asking where they really came from: Where did you get a new DVD player at a price like that? Off the back of a lorry?
See also: back, lorry, of, off
References in periodicals archive ?
She said: "The new lorries will be supplementing the lorries that we currently use.
The government has asked Highways England to review and identify sites across its land holdings which could provide an extra 1,500 spaces, which would help reduce the number of lorries parking overnight in laybys.
AUGUST 2008 Sat-navs were blamed for an increase in lost lorries round the Bromfield Industrial Estate in Mold
The independent report was called for by the Government, which is coming under increasing pressure, particularly from the EEC, to allow bigger lorries on to Britain's roads.
He said faster lorries would reduce the problem of cars, which can legally travel at 60mph where the national speed limit applies, queuing behind 40mph lorries.
"It would be a lot less stressful for all if lorries maintained a constant speed in a constant lane."
- 2005 and 2006: a crossing ban for Euro 0 and 1 lorries, a quota for Euro 2 lorries, and a free crossing for Euro 3 and Euro 4 lorries (the least polluting).
It imposes a fine on truckers that own their lorries, but the fine falls on to the operating company.
The lorries are still trying to make their way past.
It comes after terrified families have complained lorries weighing more than 7.5 tonnes are putting lives at risk by using Watling Street in Wilnecote.
So it comes as no surprise to discover that, although lorries account for only seven per cent of road traffic, they kill 17 per cent of people who die on the roads, at the rate of 11 a week.
A move to allow 44-tonne lorries on the roads was expected to be recommended today by the Commission for Integrated Transport.
POLICE have recovered two stolen lorries containing spirits worth more than pounds 400,000.
There is no hard shoulder and there are precious few lay-bys, none of which are suitable for the large lorries we now see on our roads.
THE cost of using the M6 toll road is being halved for some lorries, from pounds 10 to pounds 5.