A Philadelphia man who worked as a supervisor at the PennDOT Driver License Center in Frazer was convicted Wednesday of multiple felonies, including Identity Theft, Tampering with Public Records, Computer Trespass and related offenses.
Khalif Abdullah Ali, 44, manipulated the PennDOT computer system to supply wanted criminals with authentic drivers' licenses bearing the identities of innocent citizens.
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He created the new licenses by processing them as name changes, but the only change in each case was the removal of a comma meant to separate the first name and middle initial in the backend of the system. The change allowed Ali to print a new driver's license with a new photograph.
In a written statement, District Attorney Tom Hogan said Ali abused the trust of his position:
"[His] crime put both law enforcement and the public at risk, as it set loose in society criminals, shielded by these seemingly legitimate driver's licenses," Hogan said. "A police officer pulling over one of these criminals would have no idea that he was dealing with a potential dangerous criminal."
One of the felons to whom Ali provided false identification, Frank Smith Jr., was caught and testified against Ali during the trial. Other criminals who received driver's licenses created by Ali are still at-large.
The Pennsylvania State Police led the investigation. With the assistance of PennDOT personnel, they reviewed records and video surveillance to build a case against Ali.
Assistant District Attorney Priya DeSouza was the prosecutor in the case, which was presided over by Senior Judge Thomas Gavin.
Ali is currently in Chester County Prison awaiting his sentencing hearing, currently scheduled for Feb. 9.
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