CDL scandal continued to build, as a newspaper reported that 27 people who
illegally obtain licenses through a truck driving school there were responsible
for 200 “serious” traffic and regulatory violations, as well as 26 accidents.
The Denver Post, which broke the
story, reported the latest allegations in the growing controversy.
The newspaper reported Jan. 25 that
Colorado’s Division of Motor Vehicles had revoked the licenses of more than 200
truck drivers and other CDL holders because the division suspected they were
obtained with false information.
The 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 said.
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
A similar scandal in Illinois led the
charges against – and convictions of – more than 60 people. The charges include
former Gov. George Ryan, who is now awaiting trial.
That 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.