State licensing officials have voided dozens of CDLs associated with a Massachusetts trooper bribe scandal.
Current And Retired Mass. Troopers Arrested In CDL Bribe Scandal
On January 30, Acting U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Joshua Levy announced six arrests connected to a years-long scheme to dole out unearned CDLs in exchange for cash and gifts.
Those arrested include active Massachusetts State Police (MSP) Sgt. Gary Cederquist, 58, and Trooper Joel Rogers, 54, as well as retired Troopers Calvin Butner, 63, and Perry Mendes, 63, and two other civilian co-conspirators, Scott Camara, 42, and Eric Mathison, 47.
As part of the 74 count indictment, the six defendants were charged with with three counts of conspiracy to falsify records, three counts of conspiracy to commit extortion, three counts of extortion, six counts of honest services mail fraud, 31 counts of falsification of records, 27 counts of false statements, and one count of perjury.
“In short, as alleged in this indictment, the CDLs were for sale and troopers were bribed with free goods to pass applicants no matter how they performed on the test,” said Levy.
Defendants reportedly used the word “golden” in messaging as a code word to note that a CDL applicant should be passed.
Cederquist has since been dishonorably discharged from MSP. Rogers has been suspended without pay.
State Officials Downgrade CDLs Associated With Scheme
Levy said that the state has now identified 26 individuals who were given a CDL without passing the skills test as part of the scheme.
On Thursday, February 1, the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) announced that those 26 individuals had had their CDL privileges removed.
From a statement obtained by Boston 25 News:
“The 26 individuals identified are no longer permitted to operate a commercial motor vehicle and their licenses have been downgraded to a Class D passenger license. They are unable to obtain a commercial driver’s license in the future, without first confirming eligibility and taking and passing all required commercial permit and skills tests. The RMV is not aware of any motor vehicle crashes of the identified 26 individuals, after obtaining the commercial license at issue, involving a commercial motor vehicle.”
Levy’s office is still working to identify other CDL holders who may have been involved in the bribery scheme.