Former MVA Employee Indicted in Conspiracy to Produce and Transfer Fraudulent Maryland Driver’s Licenses and Identification Cards

September 3, 2009

Baltimore, Maryland - A federal grand jury indicted April Bell, age 35, of Parkville, Maryland, today for conspiracy to produce and transfer, and producing and transferring Maryland driver’s licenses and identification cards without lawful authority, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.

According to the five count indictment, Bell worked at the Mondawmin Mall Branch of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) and was permitted to issue identification documents, such as Maryland driver’s licenses. The indictment alleges that from July 2007 to January 2008, other conspirators contacted prospective MVA identification document applicants and telephoned Bell to inform her of such applicants. Upon arrival at the Mondawmin Mall Branch of the MVA, the conspirators contacted Bell by telephone or text message with a physical description of the prospective applicants. Bell allegedly processed applications by scanning false information into the MVA database or by inventing false driver’s license information from other states. Bell allegedly failed to administer required tests to such applicants.

As a result of this scheme and in return for money, Bell is alleged to have unlawfully produced and transferred more than 20 Maryland identification documents.

Bell faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for the conspiracy and 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for producing and transferring fraudulent identification documents. Bell is scheduled to have her initial appearance in federal district court in Baltimore tomorrow, September 4, 2009 at 11:00 a.m.

An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.

In a similar case, another former MVA employee at the Mondawmin Mall Branch and a translator for foreign-born applicants seeking a Maryland identification card were indicted on August 13, 2009 on the same charges. Former MVA employee Warren Hall, age 46, of Parkville, had his initial appearance in court on September 1, 2009, was released pending trial and is scheduled to be arraigned on September 11, 2009. The translator, Adalberto Benito Prins, age 47, of Baltimore, has not been arrested and is still being sought.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration - Investigation and Security Services Division for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorney Sujit M. Raman, who is prosecuting the case.



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