A Georgia doctor will face more than two years in prison for providing CDL holders with medical certificates when they hadn’t actually undergone physical examinations to assess whether they were fit to drive.
Earlier this month, 61 year old Georgia resident Dr. Mark Griffis was sentenced to 30 months in prison in addition to 3 years probation and a $6000 fine after he was found guilty in a federal court on charges of conspiracy to falsify United States Transportation Department mandated medical examinations.
Federal authorities say that Griffis took bribes in exchange for providing fake medical certificates for CDL drivers.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Georgia:
“Griffis agreed with Jo Carol White to falsely certify medical examination forms without actually examining the driver. (On March 21, 2018, White was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment for her role in the scheme.)
Griffis received $50 from White for every false certification. Between February 27, 2012 and September 13, 2013, Griffis falsely certified 271 bogus medical examinations. This allowed these drivers to renew their commercial driver licenses without undergoing the appropriate medical exams to assure their fitness to drive.”
Between January and September of 2013, Griffis is believed to have accepted at least $5,200.00 in bribes in exchange for the bogus medical certificates.
United States Attorney Bobby L. Christine remarked on the dangers of allowing commercial drivers without proper medical certification to get behind the wheel. “There is a risk inherent in the operation of these very large vehicles and the potential for personal injury and property damage is real. No one wants this risk compounded by undetected medical issues affecting the drivers of these vehicles. The defendant’s actions in this case seriously undermined regulations designed to promote highway safety and placed the public at risk,” he said.
The Department of Transportation, the Drug Enforcement Agency, and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration all assisted in the investigation into the conspiracy charges.