FORT LEE, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Port Authority police have arrested a truck driver, who they say has cheated the agency of $28,000 in tolls.
Police said 34-year-old Marcus Tifa of Queens drove through the cash lanes of the George Washington Bridge without paying a toll Monday. Authorities said that Tifa had been cheating the system for months, evading tolls on the GWB and other Port Authority bridges and tunnels.
Commuters were shocked by the truck driver’s alleged scam.
“That’s pretty crazy,” Fort Lee resident Andre Gomez told CBS 2′s Jessica Schneider. “Why would you do that though? You know you’re going to get caught at some point.”
Others were not quite as surprised.
“Trust me, with the way prices are with all the tolls, I don’t blame him,” William Young said.
“It’s happened a lot up here at the bridge,” explained Larry Dallas. “I live in town, so it’s the seventh time I’ve seen it happen. The tow truck drivers usually flip the plates down. That’s what happens, they want to charge a lot of money for the tolls. People are going to find a way around the system.”
On Monday morning an observant cop spotted Tifa’s truck heading eastbound with its license plates obscured from view.
“The vehicle is currently in the custody of the Port Authority police. It’s a serious matter and there are serious consequences, as the suspect in this case can testify to,” Port Authority spokesman Joe Pentangelo told WCBS 880.
Police said the front plate was displayed upside down.
“It’s hard to believe that all of these plate violations or all of these things that happened to the license plates were simply a collision of events and just happenstance,” Pentangelo told WCBS 880.
Tifa is charged with theft of services and tampering with public records.
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