Published On: Mon, Apr 30th, 2018

Dutch ex-cop sentenced for selling forged international driver’s licenses

Logo DC PAF Police aux Frontières

PHILIPSBURG – The court in Marigot sentenced a former Dutch policeman for selling forged international driver’s licenses to at least one hundred people on  the French side of the island for amounts varying from €600 to €3,000 ($726 to $3,630). The defendant, identified in the French-side newspaper Le Pélican as R. Blomont, owner of a driving school on the Dutch side of the island, most recently worked as a security officer at the airport, but he lost that job because of the investigation into the forged driver’s licenses.

The court sentenced the 48-year old defendant to a €2,000 ($2,420) fine, seized seals, awarded €300 ($363) to one of his victims and banned him from entering the French side of the island forever.

The French border police (Police aux Frontières, or PAF) says that between 2015 and 2016 the fraud put around one hundred forged international driver’s licenses in circulation, and probably more. Blomont told PAF-investigators that he had sold no more than twenty international driver’s licenses. “We think it is probably ten times that number,” a detective told the court, adding that at the time of the investigation the market had been flooded with forged driver’s licenses.

Five victims claimed damages from Blomont in civil court but in the end, only two appeared at the court hearing. Two of the victims are French-side residents who cannot obtain a driver’s license from the Dutch side.

The victims had driver’s licenses from other countries like Jamaica or no driver’s license at all. Blomont sent a copy of those licenses to a company in New Jersey, that returned an international driver’s license. The newspaper report does not explain how he managed to get these licenses for victims who did not have a national driver’s license.

According to Le Pélican, the law requires holders of an international driver’s license, also to have a valid national driver’s license.

Blomont told the court that he thought he had done nothing wrong. “That they drive without a valid license is not my fault. I gave them some lessons to make sure they were able to drive; that’s my responsibility.”

However, one of Blomont’s victims was a French woman who never passed the exam for a driver’s license. “I did not take any lessons. I went to see him about a car; he said that I could drive, I gave him $600 and he gave me the driver’s license,” she told the court.

Blomont said that he could not issue the licenses on the Dutch side. “Only the government can do that.”

Blomont has a 2005 sentence to his name from the court in Bobigny – a suburb of Paris – for trafficking drugs and a ban on entering French territory.

Blomont’s attorney asked the court for leniency, after admitting that his client had been negligent and that he should have taken more precautions: “These are tough times.”

Le Pélican notes in a sidebar that international driver’s licenses have to be issued by the country that issues someone’s national driver’s license.