Enforcement and Compliance (ECD)

Detectives, technology helping ADOT protect customers’ information

Detectives, technology helping ADOT protect customers’ information

I-17 101 traffic interchange

Detectives, technology helping ADOT protect customers’ information

Detectives, technology helping ADOT protect customers’ information

December 21, 2015

PHOENIX – When the Phoenix Police Department suspected that a man in custody for drug and weapons violations had assumed someone else’s identity, it sought assistance from the Arizona Department of Transportation’s Office of the Inspector General.

ADOT detectives determined that man’s correct identity, confirmed he’d stolen the identities of two others and found that he was a sex offender who failed to register as required by state law for the past two years. He now faces additional charges of forgery and identity theft as well as having weapons charges upgraded to prohibited-possessor status.

Another recent case involving the Office of the Inspector General started when an application for credentials from ADOT’s Motor Vehicle Division raised suspicions. Detectives determined the applicant had fraudulently applied through the use of a stolen identity and also was being investigated by the U.S. State Department for fraudulently obtaining a U.S. passport.

The key in both cases: ADOT investigators, supported by technology such as facial-recognition software, detected identity theft as part of their mission of protected Arizonans’ privacy and information.

“The outstanding investigative skills of the Office of the Inspector General are recognized nationally and internationally,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said. “The implementation of various technologies like facial recognition and the investigative processes that uncover fraud have furthered the capability of the agency to protect the privacy and personal information of Arizona credential holders.”

These efforts complement those of ADOT Motor Vehicle Division customer service representatives, who are trained to detect forgery and fraud and perform the first checks for discrepancies in application packets. The recent adoption of facial-recognition technology enhances the screening process by allowing checks against customer records in the state’s driver license database, preventing fraudulent attempts to obtain a driver license or identification card.

As Arizona’s main agency issuing a driver license or identification cards, ADOT often is called on to aid local, state and federal law enforcement agencies dealing with cases that may involve forged identification documents and identity theft.

“Detectives with the Office of the Inspector General are highly skilled in conducting cases relating to identification documents, and we’re proud that those skills help agencies beyond ADOT protect Arizonans’ information,” Halikowski said.

ADOT’s Office of the Inspector General conducts investigations into fraudulent activities involving driver license/identification card applications, vehicles sales by licensed/unlicensed dealers, vehicle title/registration and providing investigative support to state, local and federal law enforcement agencies.

For more information about ADOT please visit: azdot.gov.

ADOT detectives break up fraudulent document operation

ADOT detectives break up fraudulent document operation

I-17 101 traffic interchange

ADOT detectives break up fraudulent document operation

ADOT detectives break up fraudulent document operation

October 29, 2015

PHOENIX – As part of its continuing efforts to safeguard your information, the Arizona Department of Transportation’s Fraudulent Document Unit has broken up a criminal document operation in Phoenix.

Acting on a tip, ADOT detectives monitored the operation for two months and purchased fraudulent documents undercover. On Oct. 21, detectives located the manufacturing facility and apprehended Carlos Morales Alvarez, 34.

The unit seized manufacturing equipment, card stock used for Arizona credentials and credentials from other states, Maricopa County food handler cards and U.S. immigration documents. The suspect also had stolen identities for sale.

“I am grateful to ADOT detectives for their excellent work,” Governor Doug Ducey said. “The state has a commitment to protect Arizonans from identity theft, and those who partake in this crime and cause harm to our citizens will be prosecuted under the full extent of the law.”

ADOT detectives are still sorting through about 10 years’ worth of documents to determine how many identities were stolen. So far, they have identified and contacted six Arizona residents.

“With protecting our communities one of Governor Ducey’s top priorities, we are proud to be a state agency that safeguards the identities of Arizonans,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said. “Our detectives work relentlessly to keep that information safe.”

The suspect, alleged to be in the U.S. illegally, is currently in custody and is being charged with more than 20 felony counts, including forgery, aggravated identity theft and trafficking in stolen identities.

The Fraudulent Document Unit is a part of the Office of Inspector General under ADOT’s Enforcement and Compliance Division, which is primarily tasked with ensuring the safe and efficient movement of people, goods and services throughout the state. Certified peace officers are stationed at ports of entry and mobile inspection units along highways to check commercial vehicles.

The Office of Inspector General conducts criminal and administrative investigations involving all facets of ADOT operations, including title, registration and driver license fraud; titling of stolen vehicles; and licensed and unlicensed car dealers.

The Enforcement and Compliance Division assists other law enforcement agencies as needed.

To report suspected fraud related to ADOT Motor Vehicle Division documents, driver licenses, car dealers and criminal activity, visit azdot.gov/reportfraud.

ADOT ECD continues its mission to provide for a safer Arizona using technology to move ahead in 2015

ADOT ECD continues its mission to provide for a safer Arizona using technology to move ahead in 2015

I-17 101 traffic interchange

ADOT ECD continues its mission to provide for a safer Arizona using technology to move ahead in 2015

ADOT ECD continues its mission to provide for a safer Arizona using technology to move ahead in 2015

March 4, 2015

The Enforcement and Compliance Division of the Arizona Department of Transportation is more visibly known for its Enforcement Services, the unit that helps to ensure that commercial vehicles adhere to federal and state regulations. One of the primary goals is to improve Arizona’s ability to move people, goods and services in a safe, efficient manner through the use of education, enforcement and technology.

Enforcement Services is looking to implement virtual inspection stations at key rest areas. The state of the art technology will contain the ability to capture the axle and gross vehicle weight of the commercial vehicle in addition to the federal DOT number and license plate information. Immediately as the vehicle travels over the sensors, the system – which can be operated remotely or on-site – transmits the captured information to a central monitoring site in order to further the compliance of commercial vehicle weight, registration and permit requirements.

The unit implemented an Electronic Permit and Routing Operation system through a partnership with the motor carrier industry and the Arizona Trucking Association. The new tool, known as ePRO, provides an easier process for trucking companies and drivers to obtain more than 70 categories of permits 24/7 through the Internet. The online system provides immediate routing and roadway information along with eliminating the previous confusion of having multiple processes to submit applications, pay and receive permits.

The improvement of services will be furthered with the planned implementation of a Computer Aided Dispatch system. The system will improve the management of activity data, and facilitate timely retrieval of information to prepare detailed records. The program will increase safety of the ADOT officers by providing instant response to criminal justice inquiries, allow for the monitoring of the officer’s activity and location.

ADOT Enforcement and Compliance Division also includes the functions of the Office of the Inspector General. For 2015, there will be several improvements to how service is delivered by the division in the performance of state mandates.

The Office of the Inspector General conducts criminal and administrative investigations relating to agency operations, crimes involving fraudulent transactions with an Arizona title, registration or driver license along with violations involving licensed and unlicensed vehicle dealer operations.

OIG continuously works in partnership with numerous federal other state law enforcement agencies to investigate the problem of counterfeit identification created in foreign countries and made available online.

The Fraud Unit targets the illegal activities of criminal enterprises who steal the identities of victims, and manufacture fraudulent government documents and credentials. ADOT OIG and joint agency investigations into these criminal organizations have resulted in numerous arrests and charges ranging from computer tampering, forgery, fraudulent schemes, participating in a criminal syndicate, trafficking in stolen property, theft of means of transportation and illegal enterprise. These investigations have resulted in numerous criminal charges filed and arrests of those involved in the illegal activities.

The ADOT Enforcement and Compliance Division will continue its role for providing for a safer Arizona through enforcement of federal and state laws governing commercial vehicle operation, conducting administrative hearings on behalf of petitioners and performing criminal and administrative investigations.

ADOT expands commercial truck permit program to San Luis Port of Entry

ADOT expands commercial truck permit program to San Luis Port of Entry

I-17 101 traffic interchange

ADOT expands commercial truck permit program to San Luis Port of Entry

ADOT expands commercial truck permit program to San Luis Port of Entry

January 21, 2014

PHOENIX – In 2011, the Arizona Department of Transportation created a special overweight commercial truck permit pilot program to efficiently move time-sensitive produce shipments from Mexico across the border into Arizona through the Mariposa Commercial Port of Entry in Nogales. Success with the program in Nogales has now prompted ADOT to expand the program to include the 25-mile commercial zone at the San Luis Port of Entry.

The Single Trip Overweight Border Permit program increases the weight limits for commercial trucks from 80,000 pounds to 90,800 pounds when transporting produce from Mexico to be off-loaded into warehouses located in the commercial zone area of an Arizona international port of entry. The $75 permit may be purchased online or at the port.

Before the new ADOT overweight border permit program was implemented, more trucks and more trips were necessary to move the same amount of produce that now is accomplished with fewer trucks using the expanded overweight border permit program. Reducing the number of trucks puts fewer commercial vehicles on Arizona roadways, reducing traffic congestion and increasing traffic safety. The new permit also enhances security since cargo loads remain sealed longer and are less vulnerable to tampering.

ADOT worked with business and government representatives in the greater Yuma County area to specify allowable routes for the heavier loads in the San Luis Port of Entry commercial zone.

For more information about ADOT, please visit azdot.gov.

ADOT receives award for innovation in Nogales Port of Entry project

ADOT receives award for innovation in Nogales Port of Entry project

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ADOT receives award for innovation in Nogales Port of Entry project

ADOT receives award for innovation in Nogales Port of Entry project

August 9, 2013

A look at the upgraded port of entry.

America's Transportation Awards presented a Best Use of Innovation award to ADOT for the Nogales Mariposa Port of Entry project completed in summer 2012.

ADOT received the award during a presentation at the Western Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials annual meeting on Aug. 5 in San Francisco.

By the way, the America's Transportation Awards competition is co-sponsored by AAA, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). It was launched in 2008 to recognize projects accomplished each year by state departments of transportation – these awards highlight the value that departments of transportation add to their communities.

About the project

The Nogales Mariposa Port of Entry received new technology to allow faster processing of trucks crossing the border, thereby improving overall traffic flow and processing capability at one of the busiest ports of entry in the United States.

The project involved collaboration between ADOT, the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the U.S. General Services Administration, U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Arizona-Mexico Commission.

Upgrades included seven Slow Speed Weigh in Motion (SSWIM) scales, seven credential processing booths and a larger building to accommodate more staff to process commercial truck permitting and issuance of citations.

The project cost $8.5 million and took a little more than six months to complete. In addition to improvements at the port of entry, ADOT realigned and widened a portion of State Route 189 that runs adjacent to the port, further improving traffic flow in the area.

For more about ADOT’s ports of entry, check out our blog post from earlier this week.

ADOT's Enforcement and Compliance Division helps keep the roads safe

ADOT's Enforcement and Compliance Division helps keep the roads safe

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ADOT's Enforcement and Compliance Division helps keep the roads safe

ADOT's Enforcement and Compliance Division helps keep the roads safe

August 7, 2013
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If you don’t know much about ADOT’s Enforcement and Compliance Division, you’ve come to the right place…

We’re here to fill you in on this team that carries out a number of duties all aimed at keeping the roads safe.

Watch the video above to learn about ECD’s responsibilities relating to federal and state ports of entry. You’ll also get a look at the division’s mobile commercial vehicle operations and the efforts made to inspect vehicles and identify stolen vehicles.

For even more, check out some of our previous blog posts that focus on permitting.