OLATHE, Kan. (AP) - The number of people arrested in a phony driver’s license scheme in suburban Kansas City has swelled to 40.
Among the latest people arrested is Monica Hernandez-Gonzalez, who is accused of directing license seekers to Samantha Jo Moore, the only former Department of Revenue employee charged in the case, The Kansas City Star (https://bit.ly/1PpyNj5) reports.
Hernandez-Gonzalez, who was taken into custody late Thursday, has been charged with seven counts, including bribery. Moore, who worked as a driver’s license examiner at an office in Mission, is accused of taking bribes to supply licenses to dozens of unqualified applicants who paid as much as $2,500 apiece. She is jailed in Johnson County on 51 felonies, including official misconduct. Defense attorneys for Moore and Hernandez-Gonzalez didn’t immediately return phone messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.
Kansas Secretary of Revenue Nick Jordan said at the news conference Thursday afternoon that part of the investigation includes determining how the fraudulent licenses may have been used. Jordan said that in his five years as director, it was the first time there has been such a level of fraud uncovered.
“It’s an unfortunate situation,” he said.
Moore began working for the department in 2011, which according to court documents is when the alleged criminal activity began. But Jordan said he could not comment on when Moore’s employment ended.
Jordan and Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said they could not provide many details of the investigation, which they said has been going for a “considerable” time. Howe also said he could not talk about how many more arrests could be expected in the case, which investigators have dubbed Operation Chameleon.
Information from: The Kansas City Star, https://www.kcstar.com
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