FBI busts cash-for-licenses scheme for illegal immigrants

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at 5:00pm

The FBI issued a criminal complaint today against a driver's license examiner in Nashville who allegedly assisted illegal immigrants with obtaining genuine licenses without passing the necessary tests.

According to the complaint, Larry Murphy, who worked at the state's Hart Lane facility, accepted more than $5,000 to help undercover FBI employees obtain commercial and regular driver's licenses since January. Murphy, 54, is charged with corruptly accepting payment as an agent of the state of Tennessee.

The FBI used an informant to contact Anna Castillo, a woman who was under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security. Castillo acted as a middleman between the undercover agents and Murphy. She was also charged today with bribery of an agent of the state of Tennessee and sale of a citizenship document.

According to the complaint, Murphy falsely noted that the undercover agents passed driver's exams and even assisted one of them in making up a social security number.

The most recent offense took place yesterday when an undercover agent failed the three exams required for a commercial driver's license, but Murphy gave him a license anyway. Overall, the undercover agents provided $13,500 to Castillo.

Murphy made $27,420 a year, according to the state's employee salary database. Tennessee Department of Safety spokeswoman Dayla Qualls said Murphy was currently on discretionary leave with pay pending a federal investigation.

A warrant for Murphy's arrest was issued today.

6 Comments on this post:

By: nashmusic2244 on 4/18/12 at 3:48

More the REASON to pass HB 2721 the bill that would make the driver's license exam administered SOLELY in English for public safety, to save taxpayer dollars and to encourage LEGAL immigrants to learn English!

Eddie Garcia

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tennesseans-For-English-Language/143179179030546

By: WickedTribe on 4/18/12 at 4:54

It's mindboggling how corrupt some people are.

By: Left-of-Local on 4/20/12 at 8:38

All this proves is the fallacy of the ever so holy DL being the most reliable ID. Also if they were able to catch this, we should be able to ensure voter validity WITHOUT relyin on this shoddy and flimsy ID method.

By: parnell3rd on 4/21/12 at 6:38

Where are the NCP libs screaming ENTRAPMENT!!!!!

By: Ask01 on 4/22/12 at 9:17

I'm not sure how anyone could claim entrapment. From what I understood, the situation is pretty straightforward and Mr. Murphy is in extremely deep doo-doo.

I just hope, if convicted he is required to pay back wages received while on discretionary leave.

I will agree with those observing this incident calls into question the election security and voter fraud deterent provided by the new ID requirement.

The upside, I'm sure many people will be lining to fill the upcoming vacancy.

By: BEOWULF on 4/23/12 at 7:28

BEOWULF: Why are the powers that be in TN [or the US for that matter] allowing illegals to get a driver's license: NO LIC/NO VOTE/ARREST FOR DRIVING W/O LIC - DEPORTATION! No Problem!