Via CBS Chicago:
(CBS) – Fake driver’s licenses are flooding our market and could pose a real threat.
2 Investigator Dave Savini reports these bogus licenses are being produced overseas and sold online.
State and federal officials say they want to shut down the sales of them.
Bogus licenses are seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials in big numbers, says Chief Customs Officer Brian Bell.
“We have hundreds of boxes of these,” he says. “They are all containing counterfeit driver’s licenses.”
They are incredible fakes. Smuggled into this country by high-tech forgery rings that have mastered the details so well, they could lead to critical security threats. Each license costs about $150.
They’re smuggled inside boxes of tea sets and jewelry from China; one intercepted batch was headed to a group of 20 students at the same college.
Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White says he is amazed by the level of these fakes.
One concern if the potential homeland security issue.
“And that’s why I’m not going to stand idly by and allow this activity to continue without doing something about it,” he says.
White’s team investigating these latest seized shipments includes Tyler DuMontelle.
“Instead of a generic hologram, they are imitating our actual holograms,” says DuMontelle. “These are some of the best I’ve seen.”
Says Bell: “The question is: Is it good enough to get you on an airplane?”
It is hard to know because the fakes are that good, say experts. However, the Secretary of State’s Office says the fakes have failed the laser and ultra-violet light tests.
For those who are underage, buying one of these fakes can lead to a year-long suspension of their real license. Some college students have been kicked out of school over this issue.
Starting this week, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will be running public service announcements to educate college students and others about the consequences of buying one of these fakes.