Over the Thanksgiving holiday, Border Patrol agents in Louisville, Kentucky seized more than 5,000 fake IDs in six shipments destined for various states.
According to a press release, the agency confiscated 2,909 counterfeit driver’s licenses and 3,123 blank card stocks to make counterfeit driver’s licenses. The shipments originated in China and were heading to Florida, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio and other coastal states.
One shipment was sent to a convicted child rapist in New York. It is believed that he utilizes the fake IDs as a means of enticing minors, who then become his future victims. Louisville Port Director Thomas Mahn said fake IDs have become less about minors obtaining alcohol or cigarettes illegally. Predators are now using them to lure in children.
“Some of the major concerns as it relates to fraudulent identity documents is identity theft, worksite enforcement, critical infrastructure protection, fraud linked to immigration-related crimes such as human smuggling and human trafficking, and these documents can be used by those individuals associated with terrorism to minimize scrutiny from travel screening measures," Mahn said in a statement.
Border Enforcement Security Task (BEST) Force's analytical units in Louisville and Chicago confirmed there were similarities between all the shipments. The Homeland Security Investigation's (HSI) New York Office, who validated that the shipments were connected, are still investigating.