Customers of N&Y Professional Service Line Driving School Must be Retested Immediately or Face Suspension
State Continues Crackdown on Bus Safety
Albany, NY (March 5, 2012)
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that the license of N&Y Professional Service Line (N&Y) driving school is being suspended after the owners were charged with fraud. As a result, the 174 people who used N&Y to obtain commercial drivers' licenses must immediately schedule retests to demonstrate their qualifications or face suspension.
The school's owners, Ying Wai Phillip Ng and Pui Kuen Ng, who are married, were charged last week with conspiracy to commit mail fraud in connection with the operation of the driving school. The couple allegedly fraudulently assisted an undercover agent in passing a written commercial drivers' license permit test through the use of an elaborate system using a hidden camera and pager.
The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has identified the commercial drivers' license holders who were customers of the N&Y driving school. The DMV is notifying them that they must be retested immediately or their licenses will be suspended. Failure to call the DMV by this Friday to schedule a retest will result in an immediate suspension of their commercial drivers' license.
"We vowed last year that New York would not tolerate unsafe buses, dangerous or unqualified drivers, or fraud in obtaining licenses, and that's why this action is being taken," Governor Cuomo said. "Since then, we have added 20 additional Department of Transportation motor carrier investigators to police the motor coach industry and we have intensified inspections of vehicles and drivers at the roadside and in the garages. And, as I directed last spring, our state agencies continue working with law enforcement agencies to help ensure that New Yorkers can have confidence in their public transportation system."
Governor Cuomo noted that from March 2011 through January 2012, the state conducted more than 6,600 inspections, and as a result took 621 buses and 644 drivers off the road pending the correction of license or equipment shortcomings.
In May 2011 and August 2011, investigations conducted by the DMV led to the arrest of a total of nearly 100 commercial drivers' license holders, including bus drivers, for fraudulently obtaining multiple drivers' licenses by using aliases. Those arrests were the result of the DMV's use of facial recognition technology.
Department of Motor Vehicles Commissioner Barbara Fiala said, "Keeping our highways safe is the highest priority of this Department and our partner agencies, including the State Police and the Department of Transportation."
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said, "The Assembly Majority is committed to ensuring the safety of the traveling public. Last year we passed legislation that enables New York City to establish meaningful criteria for issuing permits to inter-city bus operators. It is clear that we must impose further regulations to ensure drivers aren't illegally obtaining licenses. Suspending the driving privileges of these operators is an essential step to safeguarding the residents of New York, and the millions of tourists that visit our state each year."
Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. said, "This is a positive step forward in preventing dangerous bus drivers from getting behind the wheel. Bus drivers are responsible for the lives and safety of their passengers, and we need to ensure they are qualified to handle that responsibility. Suspending this school's license and retesting its commercial driving customers will help further weed out dangerous and unfit drivers. New York State should also take the next step and approve a law requiring criminal background checks for all bus drivers to keep unqualified bus drivers off the road."
Assemblywoman Grace Meng said, "I applaud Governor Cuomo's priority in keeping New Yorkers safe on the roads. These types of irresponsible and dishonest acts hurt not only the drivers themselves but others on the road."
The DMV will continue to cooperate with the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Department of Homeland Security in the investigation of N&Y driving school.