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TX DMV votes to fingerprint all Texas car dealers


The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles voted Thursday to collect fingerprints from all car dealers in the state, KXAN’s Matt Grant reported. 

Dealers already on the books in Texas will be fingerprinted upon the renewal of their licenses. New dealers will have to pay a $38.25 fee as part of their application to the Texas DMV. 

The new rule will be active as of Sept. 1, 2022. 

The measure comes following KXAN’s investigation into widespread paper vehicle license plate fraud. KXAN found that fraudulent dealers can access the Department of Motor Vehicles’ dealership database. 

The result has been a $200 million illicit business in which people in Texas are able to distribute cars with fake information to all 50 states, giving those who commit crimes an easy shield from law enforcement, according to KXAN’s reporting.  

Stacy Gillman, a car dealer in the Houston area and beyond, was the only DMV board member to vote against the fingerprinting measure. Gillman owns 10 dealerships across four Texas cities, KXAN reported.   

The fingerprinting rule comes following the resignation of the head of the Texas DMV in February. NBC 5 aired an investigation in November detailing how people have used Texas’ previously existing paper plates system to commit a variety of crimes using vehicles adorned with fraudulent tags.   

People can use falsified tags to evade law enforcement by attaching them to unregistered vehicles and perpetrating crimes using those cars.  

“Texas is leading the way in the volume of paper tags that are being fraudulently issued across the country,” a Houston Division FBI agent told KXAN in December.  



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