Fifth of 16 defendants involved in California CDL scheme sentenced

By Tyson Fisher, Land Line staff writer | 3/11/2019

Another co-conspirator in a CDL scheme involving the California Department of Motor Vehicles employees and truck driving schools was sentenced recently in a federal court. In total, at least 16 people have been indicted for their involvement in the scheme.

On March 1, Rahim Mahboob was sentenced 27 months in prison, 12 months supervised released and ordered to pay a fine of $58,500. Mahboob paid at least one DMV employee to access and alter certain DMV records to indicate that the individual had passed the written CDL exam. Mahboob is the fifth person indicted to be sentenced.

From September 2014 to April 2017, owners of truck-driving schools in Southern California paid DMV employees Kari Scattaglia and Lisa Terraciano to pass their CDL applicants without having to take the written and behind-the-wheel exams, according to court documents. The two DMV employees would access the agency’s database and alter the applicants’ records to incorrectly reflect passed examinations.

Scattaglia was a manager and licensing-registration examiner in Arleta and Granada Hills. Terraciano was motor vehicle representative at the Winnetka office.

The owners of the truck-driving schools received at least $18,600 to have DMV records altered. In multiple undercover operations, agents posing as truckers were told by the owners they could pay from $1,500 to $9,000 to obtain a Class A CDL permit or license. Scattaglia told FBI agents that she received $200 for each passed written exam and $500 for each behind-the-wheel exam. Terraciano told agents she received $100 for each written exam.

In total, Scattaglia issued at least 68 fraudulent licenses. Terraciano estimated she issued approximately 60 fraudulent licenses a month, totaling to about 148 fraudulent licenses.

Mahboob was charged In November 2017 with several counts for allegedly contacting and paying Terraciano to alter the computer records.

Ruvila Lima and Poya Khanjan also were charged in November 2017 in a separate indictment for similar charges related to the scheme. Lima was an employee at a truck driving school and solicited students to give her money in exchange for CDLs without taking the appropriate tests. Khanjan shared a bank account with Lima and also offered students CDLs without tests in exchange for money.

Donald Freeman and Juan Arturo Arroyo Gomez were indicted a few days prior. Freeman was a DMV employee who accessed the DMV’s database. Arroyo Gomez was the middleman between Lima or Khanhan and Freeman.

In another separate indictment, Jagpal Singh, Jagdish Singh, Tajinder Singh, Parminder Singh and Shawana Denise Harris were charged for their role in the scheme. Jagpal owned Calcutta Truck School, Jagdish owned Gobind Truck School, Tajinder owned another trucking school, Parminder worked for Calcultta Truck School, and Harris was a DMV employee.

In separate but related cases, Kulwinder Dosanjh Singh, Pavitar Dosangh Singh, Andrew Kimura and Emma Klem were all indicted on charges in July 2015 for their role in the scheme. Kulwinder Dosanjh Singh and Pavitar Dosangh Singh were the two owners of the truck-driving schools. Kimura and Klem were co-conspirators at the DMV.

The following is the status of the other 15 defendants:

  • Kimura – sentenced 46 months imprisonment, 24 months supervised release and ordered to pay a $7,500 fine.
  • Klem – sentenced 23 months imprisonment and 36 months supervised release.
  • Pavitar Singh – sentenced 10 months imprisonment and 36 months supervised release.
  • Kulwinder Singh – sentenced 19 months imprisonment.
  • Freeman – sentencing scheduled for March 28.
  • Scattaglia and Terraciano – sentencing scheduled for May 10.
  • Lima and Gomez – sentencing scheduled for May 23.
  • Jagpal Singh – sentencing scheduled for June 21.
  • Khanjan – status conference scheduled for April 4.

Four defendants have decided to go to trial. Jagdish Singh, Tajinder Singh, Parminder Singh and Harris have a jury trial scheduled for Oct. 15.

 

 

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