Massachusetts Troopers Among 6 Arrested in License Bribery Scheme

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Massachusetts Troopers Among 6 Arrested in License Bribery Scheme

Current and Former State Police Officers Accused of Accepting Bribes for Passing Scores on CDL Exams

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Boston, MA — Two serving and two former Massachusetts State Police troopers, along with two civilians, were apprehended in an alleged scheme involving bribery for favorable results on commercial driver’s license (CDL) tests, federal prosecutors revealed on Tuesday.

Massachusetts Troopers Bribery: Troopers Caught in Bribery Web

According to Acting U.S. Attorney Joshua Levy, the accused troopers and civilians collaborated since August 2018 to grant passing scores to unqualified drivers, some of whom hadn’t even attempted the test. Shockingly, among those improperly passed were four state troopers themselves.

Sgt. Gary Cederquist, 58, and Trooper Joel Rogers, 54, both serving, along with retired troopers Calvin Butner, 63, and Perry Mendes, 63, were among those arrested. The two civilians implicated were Scott Camara, 42, and Eric Mathison, 47. Levy disclosed that Butner and Mendes were apprehended in Florida on Monday, while the rest were taken into custody Tuesday morning in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Troopers Bribery: The Alleged Conspiracy Unveiled

The indictment outlines a trooper, unnamed in court documents, colluding with Cederquist, Butner, Mendes, and Rogers in the state police’s Commercial Driver’s Licensing Unit. Camara, associated with a truck driving school in Brockton, Massachusetts, and Mathison, employed at an unnamed spring water company, were the civilian counterparts mentioned by prosecutors.

Massachusetts Troopers Bribery: Charges and Exchange of Benefits

The accused face a total of 74 charges, including extortion, honest services fraud, mail fraud, conspiracy, false statements, and falsification of records, as detailed by Levy. In return for pushing through unqualified drivers, the troopers allegedly received various gifts, including a $2,000 snowblower, a $10,000 driveway, landscaping services, bottled water, and other non-monetary items.

Condemnation and Investigation Progress

Michael Krol, the special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations, condemned the actions of the implicated troopers but urged the public not to generalize about the entire Massachusetts State Police force. Authorities have been collaborating with the state’s Registry of Motor Vehicles to identify unqualified drivers, with over two dozen individuals flagged so far.

Revealing Text Exchanges

Text exchanges detailed in the indictment shed light on the cavalier attitude of the accused towards the licensing process. Butner allegedly joked about an applicant being “a mess,” while Cederquist disparaged another as “an idiot” who didn’t grasp the test’s requirements.

CDL Requirements and Regulatory Framework

A CDL is mandatory for operating heavy trucks, buses, or vehicles transporting hazardous materials. Massachusetts mandates written and road tests, along with a medical exam, for CDL issuance. License holders must be U.S. citizens or legal residents with a valid driver’s license.

Legal Proceedings and Representations

The defendants, currently in custody, were unreachable for comment. Legal representation details for the six accused individuals were not immediately available. The case, identified as U.S. v. Cederquist, et al., is registered under case number 1:24-cr-10024 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.