A multi-agency taskforce has taken 36 persons into custody for allegedly possessing illegally obtained genuine Florida state commercial driver’s licenses (CDL), or hazmat hauling endorsements or having access to ports of South Florida.
The recipients of the illegal documentation were among a total of 52 arrested, including three state examiners and five outside recruiters, according to criminal complaints.
As many as 2,000 driver’s licenses may have been issued during this scheme, The Washington Times reported.
The five recruiters would refer the recipients to the examiners, and would provide the examiners with the paperwork. The examiners in turn would falsely certify the illegal aliens’ citizenship as legal, stated the criminal complaint. The examiners would charge a fee of $100 to $200 while the recruiters would charge $1,500 to $3,000.
“This type of criminal activity poses a national security and public safety risk to our community,” said Jesus Torres, Special Agent in Charge for U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
“This makes it the highest number of individuals arrested with respect to cases involving driver license schemes, ” Nina Pruneda, spokesperson for ICE, told Fleet Owner.
Indeed, among driver’s license cases, this is one of largest cases since an Illinois investigation in 1998 led to the indictment of 39 people, 18 of whom were Illinois state employees. The inquiry spread down to Florida after it was learned that applicants were traveling there from Illinois to obtain fraudulent CDL’s, which were exchanged for CDLs in Illinois.
See Tougher going.