By Charlie Morasch, Land Line staff writer
Drivers like David Larry, aka Lawrence Lipkin, and Muhammad Tariq, aka Tariq Hussain, are among hundreds of individuals recently arrested for holding multiple commercial drivers’ licenses under different identities.
The investigation, which seems to reveal a major gap in licensing procedures, is being publicized as a major coup for law enforcement and immigration authorities in New York.
New York State recently arrested 51 commercial drivers after facial recognition software identified dozens of truck and bus drivers who held multiple commercial drivers licenses.
New York reviewed records of 600,000 CDL holders in the state by using facial recognition software, which allegedly recognized the same faces for drivers who held at least two CDLs under different identities.
In addition to the 51, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in news release from his office that more than 70 other CDL drivers have been arrested for having multiple CDLS this year. Cuomo reported that 800 drivers have been arrested for having two or more licenses under different aliases since February 2010.
“With some high-tech help, the state can now quickly find drivers who think it’s acceptable to use an alias to illegally get more than one license,” Cuomo said in the written statement.
The case apparently involved a partnership between New York and immigration authorities. Several prosecutors and investigators said the multiple CDLs were likely sought by drivers who either had suspended licenses, or were concealing a lack of training or safe driving record.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director John Morton was quoted in the same press statement saying that the recent CDL investigation is “the beginning of an important partnership between ICE and the New York Department of Motor Vehicles.”
“It will allow our agencies to combine resources to facilitate the arrest of criminals who endanger public safety by obtaining legitimate documents through fraudulent means,” Morton said.
For more information, and a complete list of individuals charged, click here.
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