Dozens Arrested For Fake IDs With Use of Technology
Sixty-nine New Jersey drivers were arrested in February 2014 for using false driver’s licenses. The arrests were made in large part due to police officers’ use of new facial recognition technology. This technology was able to distinguish the drivers from the photos on their driver’s licenses, identify key differences and weed out the fakes from the genuine matches.
Many of the drivers were people who had previously lost their licenses due to multiple convictions, including DUI. Others among those arrested were convicted felons who were attempting to avoid the problems posed by having a criminal record. Drivers were charged with use of personal identifying information of another, tampering with public records or information and in a few cases, forgery.
The new technology has played an instrumental role in criminal prosecutions such as these. It is allegedly so precise that it can detect trace differences in photographs, including the distance between someone’s eyes. By using the technology on individuals with false IDs, officials were able to readily identify the suspects as false impersonators and make arrests.
Technology plays a growing role in criminal prosecutions. In addition to facial recognition, law enforcement agents are also beginning to rely on inventions and innovations like 3D printers, which can recreate important evidence and crime scenes.
While technology is certainly a boon to prosecutors, much of it is still untested, and prosecutors and defense attorneys alike have questions about its validity in the courtroom. Defendants face the new obstacle of having to navigate a technologically rich prosecution without established defenses.
If a new technology such as facial recognition led to your criminal arrest in New Jersey, consult a lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your options and possible defense strategies.