Two New York security guards pleaded guilty last month to conspiracy to commit mail fraud in connection with a widespread falsified Commercial Driver’s License test-taking scheme.
According to the Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General, Inocente Gonzalez and LaToya Bourne were two of 11 individuals indicted in October 2013 on charges related to a CDL test-taking fraud in New York City. Three others have pleaded guilty in connection with a scheme that assisted non-English speaking drivers with obtaining a CDL.
Gonzalez and Bourne worked as security guards at New York State Department of Motor Vehicles locations in Manhattan. According to the indictment, the two security guards aided other conspirators in carrying out the scheme.
Court documents revealed that CDL applicants who paid for the cheating service were told to leave the DMV with uncompleted tests that would be completed by co-defendant Marie Daniel. While performing security at the locations, Gonzalez and Bourne would allow the applicants to leave the testing area.
Land Line reported on Jan. 23 that Marie Daniel pleaded guilty to one count of attempt and conspiracy to commit mail fraud. Daniel’s sentence hearing is scheduled for April 24.
Applicants paid facilitators between $1,800 and $2,500 for CDL exam answers and escort assistance through DMV processes, according to the Office of Inspector General. The assistance provided to applicants included pencils that contained encoded test answers, Bluetooth headsets that relayed answers, and an external test-taker who was positioned nearby to take the exams.
An investigation found that five New York State DMV test centers were being used for the fraudulent CDL test schemes, the Office of Inspector General noted. Surveillance operations, including the use of remote observation posts and pole-cameras, identified the defendants participating in the fraud scheme, including DMV security personnel, an external test-taker, facilitators, “runners,” and lookouts.
Other defendants charged in the case are Akmal Narzikulov, 28, of Brooklyn; Firdavs Mamadaliev, 22, of Brooklyn; Dale Harper, 48, of Bronx; Joachim Pierre Louis, 32, of Brooklyn; Luc Desmangles, 27, of Brooklyn; Beayeah Karmara, 25, of Staten Island; Jose Payano, 44, of Brooklyn; and Tanael Daniel, 36, of Brooklyn.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General, New York State Inspector General, New York State Attorney General’s Office, New York Police Department Internal Affairs Bureau, New York County District Attorney’s Office, and the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles were all involved with the investigation.
Contributing Writer Charlie Morasch and Staff Writer Greg Grisolano contributed to this report.
Copyright © OOIDA