AUGUST 16, 2007
A state employee who helped dozens of illegal immigrants obtain authentic U.S. driverâ??s licenses has been federally charged with 174 counts of fraud, corruption and official misconduct.
The Tampa Florida woman worked in the driver’s license section of the Hillsborough County Tax Collectors office and was part of a large scale operation that sold valid driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants for cash.
The licenses were sold for about $200 each and the indicted woman (Deisy Oropesa) says she pocketed over $25,000.
One of the illegal aliens who bought a license said that a middle man, who she paid $1,200, instructed her to go to Oropesa’s counter at work and use a code phrase to obtain the license. Oropesa would enter false information into the Department of Highway Safey and Motor Vehicles computer system to reflect that the illegal immigrants presented a U.S. passport to prove lawful status in the country.
Homeland Security officials should be deeply concerned since several of the September 11 terrorists used illegally obtained authentic driver’s licenses to board the planes they hijacked. In fact, the 9/11 Commission said that identification cards are as important to terrorists as explosives.
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