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What is your reaction to this Chinese crime ring accused in New Mexico driver license fraud?
(Reuters) – Three leaders of a Chinese crime ring were indicted on Thursday as part of efforts by New Mexico to stop illegal immigrants from fraudulently claiming residency to get driver’s licenses in the state.
The men were accused of running ads in Chinese newspapers in New York City promising New Mexico driver’s licenses, according to the office of District Attorney Kari Brandenburg in Albuquerque. Arrests were pending.
The indictments of Gordon Leong, 23, Tin Cheung, 35, and Alex Cheung, 60, brought yet another sharp rebuke by Republican Governor Susana Martinez of the state’s driver license system that allows undocumented immigrants to obtain licenses.
“We have long known of fraud and abuse in our driver’s license system and these latest indictments make it clear that we must address (the) problem,” Martinez said.
“We are attracting criminals to our state who exploit our driver’s license policy and threaten the safety and security of all New Mexicans.”
New Mexico is one of three states, including Utah and Washington, that allow illegal immigrants to lawfully obtain driver’s licenses provided they show proof of residency.
Some officials fear the state’s lenient driver’s license rules were making New Mexico a magnet for illegal immigrants from out-of-state seeking licenses unavailable to them in the states where they live.
Seeking to combat such fraud, Martinez’s administration in July ordered the state to reverify the physical residency of foreign nationals who hold New Mexico driver’s licenses in order to get or keep their licenses.
Martinez, a former prosecutor who made a crackdown on illegal immigration the centerpiece of her election campaign, issued the requirement after the state legislature failed to ban licenses for illegal immigrants earlier this year.
But opponents have sued to block the recertification process, arguing the measure unfairly singles out individuals based on whether they were born in the United States.
The trio indicted on Thursday, who had been operating out of leased apartments in Albuquerque, are accused of securing driver’s licenses for 62 illegal immigrants of Chinese descent, primarily from New York, for $1,500 each in 2009 and 2010, the District Attorney’s office said in a statement.
Each defendant faces 386 counts including fraud, forgery and making a false affidavit. Tin and Alex Cheung were also accused of fraudulently notarizing residential and lease agreements for their customers.
The immigrants who participated in the scheme flew into Albuquerque from New York, obtained their driver’s permits and left the state, the indictment says.
The ringleaders were accused of having the actual licenses mailed to an address in Albuquerque and then forwarded to their clients in New York. The state has canceled all 62 driver’s licenses issued in the case.
In a similar case earlier this month, a grand jury indicted an Albuquerque woman on more than 300 felony counts of helping 43 illegal immigrants from Mexico obtain the licenses.
Eralier supporters stated
SANTA FE – Should people who met every legal requirement to obtain a New Mexico driver’s license be subjected to proving their residency to the governor’s staff?
A national civil rights group on Wednesday said the answer to that question is a resounding no, and that Gov. Susana Martinez had overstepped her authority in creating a residency certification program for up to 10,000 foreign nationals.
The Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund sued Martinez’s administration in state District Court, seeking to end a state program in which foreign nationals must travel to Albuquerque or Las Cruces to verify that they are residents of New Mexico.http://www.lcsun-news.com/las_cruces-news/ci_18753460
Will MALDEF add these as new clients in their lawsuit against New Mexico ?
Chinese crime ring , they are criminals . The problem are the others that keep fighting to keep letting the illegals to keep the dr lic. If they are illegals they don’t belong in this country !
Is “http://nyrentsource.com” a total scam? Do they have real listings?
I see apartment ads listed on craigslist daily (same apartments – different contact email address). When trying to get more information the apartment advertiser sends back a canned email saying to visit http://nyrentsource.com. This website has no information on any apartments, but requires you to pay a “one time fee” of either $39.99, $59.99 or $69.99 for access to their listings. It seems pretty suspicious to me. They are not listed as licensed brokers in New York (you can check at dos.state.ny.us). Has anyone ever used this service and not been ripped off?
I’m thinking it’s more of a scam after doing some additional digging – their “contact us” email address “firstname.lastname@example.org” isn’t functioning, and their web site is registered through a private service that obscures details of the actual registrar.
Just a hint…DONT EVER PAY FOR ANYTHING ONLINE WHEN IT REQUIRES FOR STUFF LIKE THAT!! I have been ripped off by other sites.
Just go under www.ask.com and type in rental homes and apartments in (where ever you live)
People Please Answer. I was looking on the craigslist about a minute ago and noticed?
that places like California, New York, and Texas had ads for Apartments & home Rentals OVER $1000 dollars a month!!!( (EVEN SOME OF THE 1 BEDROOMS WERE $800 a month not inculduing utilites!!) And the funny part about this is that MOST OF THE PROPERTIES LOOKED AVERGAGE OR BELOW AVERAGE. I was just wondering how can anybody in there RIGHT MIND PAY THIS AMOUNT AND BE HAPPY!. I live in Port St. Lucie FL and I all I pay is 575 for a huge studio that inculdes untilies. Next month I will be moving into a 3 bedroom for 670 a month. I am single, with no children, and make $43,000 a year. THERE IS NO WAY I WOULD PAY ANYTHING OVER $800 dollar a month to live at a place. WHY WOULD MOST PEOLE WASTE THAT MUCH MONEY TO LIVE IN A PLACE ANYWAY. (I know that this is not the category to ask this quesion but I will get the most responces here.
Yep. You’ve never traveled at all – have you?
I’m in Minneapolis with a smaller house at $2,000/month + util.
On vacation, I rented a penthouse on Marco Island, Fl at $7,000 week. (I shared it)
(You’ve got to get out more)
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