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Man Pleads Guilty in Connection with Fraudulent CDL Test-Taking Scheme

On May 22, 2014, Jose Payano (a/k/a Polo) pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court, Brooklyn, New York, to mail fraud in connection with an investigation of a widespread fraudulent Commercial Driver's License (CDL) test-taking scheme. The investigation has revealed that fraudulent CDL test-taking activities have taken place at five Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) test centers in the New York City area. Payano participated in the scheme by facilitating the exchange of testing materials between a CDL applicant and an external test-taker. CDL applicants paid facilitators between $1,800-$2,500 in return for CDL exam answers and escort assistance through DMV processes. Other fraud schemes identified during the investigation include the use of pencils with miniaturized test answers encoded therein and the use of a Bluetooth headset as a communication device to relay CDL test answers. 

On September 25, 2013, Payano and ten other subjects were arrested in connection with this matter and subsequently charged. 

We are conducting this investigation with the assistance from Department of Homeland Security, New York Police Department, NYC DMV Investigations, NYS-Attorney General's Office, and NYS-IG.