Colorado revokes more than 200 CDLs for false information

| 1/25/2005

Colorado’s Division of Motor Vehicles has revoked the licenses of more than 200 truck drivers and other CDL holders because the division suspects they were obtained with false information, The Denver Post reported today, Jan. 25.

The state’s Department of Revenue, which includes the motor vehicle department, was already under investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the federal Department of Transportation after suspicions were raised that state employees were illegally selling driver’s licenses, the newspaper reported.

Many of the licenses, which included a number of tractor-trailer drivers and others, used Social Security numbers that did not match the drivers’ names. Some CDLs were allegedly sold for up to $2,500.

A similar scandal in Illinois led to charges against – and convictions of – more than 60 people. That case included charges against former Gov. George Ryan, who is now awaiting trial.

The Illinois investigation, dubbed “Operation Safe Road,” initially focused on bribes exchanged for CDLs for unqualified truck drivers at the McCook CDL facility. The federal probe was later expanded to a range of alleged bribery and other corruption in the 1990s.

Ryan, who served as secretary of state from 1991 to 1999 – and therefore was in charge of McCook and other such facilities – has said he knew there was a culture of corruption in the secretary of state’s office but said he was unaware of the specifics.

Two of the truckers who received the fraudulent licenses in the Illinois scandal were later involved in two accidents with a total of nine deaths. One of those incidents involved a fatal 74-vehicle wreck in 1998.