By Charlie Morasch, Land Line staff writer
A Pennsylvania trucking school employee has been found guilty for her role in a major conspiracy that helped more than 400 people illegally obtain commercial drivers licenses.
On Sept. 20, a federal jury ruled that Irina Rakhman was guilty of conspiracy to produce identification documents without lawful authority. The verdict came after a five-day trial.
Rakhman worked at the International Training Academy, a trucking school that offered to train potential truck drivers and rent them tractor-trailers to take the FMCSA CDL Skills Tests.
The trucking school even provided interpreters for drivers to help them take the CDL Knowledge portion of the exam in their native language.
As it turns out, the trucking school also provided customers with fake residency documents to satisfy PennDOT requirements and even helped them open illicit bank accounts. The interpreters also gave CDL candidates answers to the exam as they were tested.
Seven others have been charged in the case, which allegedly included CDLs being issued to more than 400 “unqualified individuals.”
Vitaliy Kroshnev, Tatyana Kroshnev and Tair Rustamov each pleaded guilty Sept. 8 to one count of conspiracy to produce, and aiding and abetting the production of identification documents. Vitaliy Kroshnev also pleaded guilty to an additional count of false statement.
The case was investigated by the FBI, with assistance from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Pennsylvania State Police.
In July, Land Line reported about a state bill in Pennsylvania that would require English-only CDL testing.
That bill remains in committee.
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