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Document and Benefit Fraud
02/27/2019

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Philadelphia man convicted in identity theft scheme

PHILADELPHIA — On Wednesday, Feb. 27, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, announced that a Philadelphia man, was convicted by a jury of one count of conspiracy to produce identification documents without lawful authority, one count of bribery of an agent from PennDOT, two counts of misuse of a Social Security number, and one count of aggravated identity theft, following a joint investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Social Security Administration, with special assistance from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. 

Bakary Camara, 32, bribed his co-conspirator Henry Gibbs (a former PennDOT agent) in order to unlawfully obtain Pennsylvania learner’s permits and non-commercial and commercial driver’s licenses for foreign nationals and others. Some of the individuals for whom the defendant assisted in getting a driver’s license did not speak English and could not pass the DMV knowledge tests. The defendant obtained and attempted to obtain licenses for at least one individual who entered the country illegally. In return for the bribes, Gibbs entered false information into the PennDOT system indicating the individuals passed the required tests, even though they had never taken them.

Moreover, the defendant falsified documents (including utility bills, cellular phone bills, tax notices, and insurance documents) to make it appear that some non-Pennsylvania residents lived in Pennsylvania. The defendant gave the individuals the falsified documents to provide to Gibbs, who accepted the falsified documents and uploaded them into the PennDOT system. The defendant unlawfully assisted at least 30 immigrants and foreign nationals in obtaining Pennsylvania learner’s permits and driver’s licenses through Gibbs. The defendant charged these individuals $300 to $7,000 to assist them with obtaining a Pennsylvania driver’s license and provided Gibbs at least $5,000 in bribes.

“Today’s guilty verdict highlights Homeland Security Investigations Philadelphia continued vigilance against corruption schemes that damage the trust the public places in our state institutions,” said Marlon V. Miller, Special Agent in Charge of HSI Philadelphia. “This case is another excellent example of federal, state and local cooperation to combat fraud in our community.”

“This kind of bribery and fraud will never be tolerated,” said U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain. “It is incredibly dangerous to provide driver’s licenses to those who have not even passed a driving test. In his scheme, the defendant committed a fraud on the government and created a true danger to public safety. We are grateful that the jury held him accountable for his crimes.”

 The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tiwana Wright.

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Last Reviewed/Updated: 02/28/2019