TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Officials in New Jersey are crediting a new high-tech tool with helping them uncover some disturbing fraud.
A yearlong effort to uncover New Jersey motorists who use fake identities to get driver’s licenses has produced an initial wave of 38 criminal prosecutions.
They include five sex offenders and 29 other motorists whose real licenses had been suspended.
In all, state officials said Tuesday that more than 600 potential criminal cases have been referred to prosecutors in “Operation Facial Scrub.”
WEB EXTRA: See The List Of Defendants
The state used facial recognition technology to scan all 19 million photos in the Motor Vehicle Commission system to see if different names could be associated with the same photos.
“What the computer is analyzing are the structural aspects of your face — the distance between your eyes and the features of your nose,” State Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa told 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg.
The first motorists charged include 58-year-old truck driver Rickie Storie, of Old Bridge, whose real and fake licenses have been suspended 64 times, including six times for drunken driving violations.
Also indicted was 50-year-old Raymond Pompey, a Coach USA bus driver from Hackensack, who allegedly assumed the identify of a dead man to get a license.
“His license had been suspended six times for traffic violations, he also has a felony record for identity theft fraud and forgery,” Chiesa said.
The investigation also led to charges against an alleged sex offender from Elizabeth, 57-year-old Hiram Maldonado, who had a fake license to drive a school bus.
“He had multiple suspensions related to three DUI convictions. He also is wanted on an active warrant out of Florida on a charge of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a minor,” Chiesa said.
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