(KRON) — A San Francisco man has been arrested and charged with filing fraudulent applications for disabled parking placards some of which they say he sold for $1000.
Investigators have linked 35-year-old Montana Le to nearly three dozen applications.
San Francisco prosecutors have charged Le with three counts of filing false information and three counts of unauthorized use of personal identifying information.
The DMV says Le filed the disabled placard applications with a forged doctor’s signature. Investigators say a San Francisco woman told them she bought fraudulent placards from Le.
Le was released from San Francisco County jail on June 2 after posting $80,000 bail.
The DMV says this case is connected to a similiar 2014 case. Yessi Morales was charged in July 2014 with 24 felony count parking placard fraud. Morales told investigators she purchased placards from Le.
Le came under suspicion after DMV staff flagged a number of applications that appeared fraudulent. The DMV looks for problems including suspected forged doctor’s signatures, similar applicant and doctor
handwriting, frequent applications from the same doctor and suspected false medical diagnoses.
“Our investigation revealed that Le had a number of parking placards registered to his home address. Most of them were issued to different people and all signed by the same doctor,” DMV Supervising Investigator Calvin Woo said in a statement. “We were able to confirm that the doctor’s signatures were forged, which is a felony.”
The DMV’s Operation Blue Zone, launched in February 2014, focuses on identifying fraud during the application process.
The operation has led investigators to open 176 related cases, 50 of which have resulted in felony prosecution reports being filed.
Thirty-six suspects have been charged with multiple felonies, eight have been arrested and 46 cases remain active.
Investigators have confirmed that 91 applications had forged doctor signatures and canceled 94 placards. DMV investigators have also issued 135 misdemeanor citations during enforcement operations for fraudulent use of disabled placards.
Members of the public who wish to report someone who is misusing a disabled parking placard can contact the DMV investigations office and submit a written complaint, anonymously if desired.
Forms can be found online at dmv.ca.gov or at local DMV field offices.
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