DMV Arrests Crew in Registration Scheme

By Rachel Davidson
|  Thursday, Feb 14, 2013  |  Updated 1:47 PM PDT
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DMV Arrests Crew in Registration Scheme

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A scam lasting more than two years was put to an end as a crew of people were arrested for allegedly submitting fraudulent paperwork to the Department of Motor Vehicles, turning over a huge sum of cash for themselves.

DMV investigators said Daly City field office employees have been reporting suspicious paperwork submissions since September of 2010. Dubbed "The Crew of 7," this group has been offering their services to people who had problems registering with the department.

The DMV on Thursday said that five members of "The Crew of 7" had recently been arrested, but they did not identify them. A remaining member is still at large.

The latest arrests follow the February arrest of Donald Lee, 52 of San Francisco.

DMV investigators said Lee was the ringleader. The crew allegedly would tell DMV customers that they could register their vehicles for half the cost of the actual registration. They would pocket this money and submit a fake check to the DMV that temporarily cleared the customer's account, according to DMV investigators. Once the check bounced, the DMV would void the registration, leaving Lee and his crew with the extra cash. This successful scheme netted more than $50,000 from several Bay Area field offices.

Lee was arrested on Feb. 6 while trying to register another vehicle in the Daly City field office. He is booked at the San Mateo County jail and charged with 32 felony counts of conspiracy commercial burglary, forgery, theft by false pretenses, among other charges.

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