China Floods U.S. with Near-Perfect Fake Driver’s Licenses

Dave Savini, CBS Chicago, September 22, 2014

Fake driver’s licenses are flooding our market and could pose a real threat.


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.



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  • Julius Caesar

    As if the roads weren’t already filled with enough people who can’t drive, and certainly don’t deserve to have their license…

  • JackKrak

    Confucius say “How you have a billion people and can only make flip-flops, plastic toys and fake ID’s?”

    • Anglokraut

      Don’t forget the poisoned dog treats and baby formula!

      • phillyguy

        Boycott everything made in China, watch out for all the frozen seafood sold in our supermarkets it is all poison from China read the label before you buy

        • I found frozen crawdads at Wal Mart, and since I love crawdad etouffee, I pulled a package out of the seafood freezer case, immediately thinking about the roux I would make to go with them and the rice. Looking at the label, I saw the origin: China. I immediately put it right back; there is simply no way I am eating something that came out of a Chinese lake or river.

          The environmental laws in the People’s Republic are approximately what you would expect from Mordor or Isengard.

          • phillyguy

            they don’t come out of a toxic Chinese lake or river they come from Chinese cesspools toilet water but they use the farm this fish eat it and people will die

      • OS-Q

        Ham flavored cardboard

    • Raymond Kidwell

      The primary export of the U.S. is money that they printed out of thin air, as well as raw materials such as lumber and grains. Most computers, cars etc. are made in Asia or Mexico as well.

  • Teresa Nichols

    I don’t see why they are necessary. Just illegally enter California and you will be issued a legal drivers license free and clear.

  • We all fear the worst, but the slightly hopeful side of me thinks that perhaps the most frequent uses of these things will be under 21s faking their ages up to 21 in order to buy alcohol and get into clubs.

  • The group of “about 20” college students was at CU Boulder a year or two ago. They just wanted the fake IDs so they could buy liquor. The package was delivered to a supermarket – of all things – by mistake, opened, and the manager reported the matter to the police. The students were arrested for attempted criminal impersonation. I never did find out how their cases worked out.

    • Michael Robert Ryan

      The 21 drinking age is BS anyway, and the only reason it was ever passed in many states is because of blackmail by the federal nannies (since the Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984, any state that sets an age lower than 21 loses highway funding.)

      • Even though that highway funding was originally our money in the first place, paid to the feds as income and excise taxes.

        • Michael Robert Ryan

          Yes, it’s outrageous.

  • Magician


    • Tim_in_Indiana

      Don’t call in the trolls.

  • Tim_in_Indiana

    the Secretary of State’s Office says the fakes have failed the laser and ultra-violet light tests.

    Perhaps the real problem is the unmotivated nonwhites manning the license bureau branches.

  • WR_the_realist

    Chinese are world class experts at creating fake stuff. They make fake rare coins (complete with enough defects to seem believable) with PCGS holders to assure you of their grade and authenticity. They make fake designer label goods of all sorts. Experts don’t believe any Chinese fossil is real until they’ve seen the X-rays. So it was only a matter of time before the Chinese applied their core competency to driver’s licenses.

    • Raymond Kidwell

      They actually make knock off motorcycles. For example they make exact replicas of Honda motorcycle and apparently Honda allows them to do it. They are of lower quality but any part can be interchanged with the real honda part and vice versa. They are less than half the price of a real Honda. They also have Suzuki etc. most of the Japanese brands knocked off. I guess they are banned in the U.S. or something because I never can find anywhere to buy them although I have heard of people having them in the U.S. It would be nice to get a brand new motorcyle for the price of a used one and if anything broke on it just buy some salvage part made by the real brand. I guess it would cut into the name brand’s sales too much in America but they seem commonly available in other parts of the world.

    • Most of the Microsoft software sold in China is counterfeit. Apparently intellectual property rights are an inconvenient concept for them.

      • Raymond Kidwell

        Almost everything sold in China is an intellectual counterfeit. Such as counterfeit name brands etc. They don’t honor intellectual rights. They also go online and look up U.S. patent applications and copy the technology. In all honesty they only hurt themselves with this. It’s a reason they will never have any real tech industry or intellectual industry. Nobody is going to work for years on something just to have it copied without compensation.

  • NoMosqueHere

    Can the chinese make fake chinese drivers, since the real ones are a menace on the roads?

  • IstvanIN

    China is not our friend and we should never have given away the entire store to them.

    • phillyguy

      You got that right trying it and all the immigrant Chinese in this country he like they are here to destroy us economically, beware of the Asians they are our real enemy , more than the Mexicans and the Muslims they smile in your face and would stab you in the back

  • Simonetta

    In Portland Oregon there is a Chinese operation that is selling -perfect- imitations of $100/month public-transport bus passes for $10.

    As I understand the situation, the Tri-Met authorities are split in their behind-closed-door opinions about what to do because the ‘fake’ bus passes are more successful at getting hundreds of people out of their cars than their various $100,000 a pop ‘encourage ridership’ programs are.

    • Raymond Kidwell

      This is why China is a third world nation. Despite relatively high I.Q.s you have low altruism. Similar things happen in Israel. You can’t look solely at I.Q. in a group’s ability to succeed- the two primary factors are I.Q. and corruption/altruism. People who seemingly have no concern for the well being of society as a whole or a concern for other people tend to be less successful overall. White people, especially Germanics, while being relatively dumb excel in a sense of social duty and concern for others. This leads to more successful societies.

      Your typical “superior” Chinese cheat on their taxes, will rip off people whenever it seems beneficial to do so, don’t honor laws unless there is some immediate punishment for breaking them, seemingly have no problem skinning animals alive or harming other people without a lot of remorse.

      I really like East Asians and think in most ways they are the same as other people, but it seems like most non-whites lack a certain level of sympathy, honor of law, or concern for society as a whole.

      • Raymond Kidwell

        The problem is they will use their higher I.Q.s to lie, cheat and steal their way to social prominence until the corruption collapses the whole system. And dumb white people will stand idly by not knowing what is going on.

      • The recent Chinese financial “success” story is Alibaba (dot) com. In this scheme, investors do not actually own any shares in the various securities, they own shares in Alibaba itself. This means that Alibaba is set up perfectly for a “pump-and-dump” scam. Since my mother is a retired banker, and my wife is a banker, we are no fools when it comes to money. We are visiting mom for the week (she just turned 72) and an eventual pump-and dump” is the first thing that occurred to the three of us over breakfast this morning.

        Overseas investors should have an “interesting” time trying to get their money back out of Chinese bankruptcy court.

    • Magician

      How about bringing the price down to $50 from $100

      It should be low enough to encourage people to use real passes, and also low enough to convince the general public to use public transportation instead of cars.

  • LHathaway

    “Fake driver’s licenses are flooding our market”

    This nation is now, ‘our market’. Any other description might have been hate.

  • FozzieT

    The Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is this guy. Glad he’s on the case:

    • Ngati Pakeha

      Another byproduct of ‘Chicago politics’. Talking about that; isn’t Jessie Jnr’s time just about up? I’ll be pleasantly surprised if the authorities actually send his wife to jail after he gets out per the sentencing deal. They should have both been sent down at the same time!

  • shmo123

    What’s the reason for having a fake driver’s license? Unless you’re under age and want one to get into bars, etc. I see no purpose. Any foreigner here need only show a passport to fly domestically. If you use it to “drive” and ever get pulled over, you’re screwed anyway. I would imagine having a fake license would be worse than driving without one at all.

    • A fake real-looking drivers license combined with a fake real-looking birth certificate and a fake real-looking Social Security card pretty much makes you a citizen.

      • shmo123

        At least in appearance. But the fake documents don’t put in “in” the system. If you get pulled over and hand a cop a fake driver’s license, what’s going to happen when he types your name in the system and you’re not there? Same with using a fake SS card.

  • Paleoconn

    These bloody people make perfect copies of Louis Vuitton bags and Apple gadgets and we’re impressed that they knock off our licenses?