A House Committee investigating the Revenue Department’s handling of Missourians information has looked back on a fraud case involving the St. Joseph license office. Nine people in Missouri were indicted in January 2012 for a conspiracy thought to have provided more than 3,500 fraudulent IDs to illegal immigrants, with the St. Joseph office its hub.

The Bipartisan Committee on Privacy Protection has asked the Revenue Department’s Special Agent in Charge, David Wickerham, if he thinks the Department’s new licensing process that includes the scanning and retention of personal documents, could help fight such fraud. He says it would not because in that case, actual documents were being used by the perpetrators.

“As it relates to St. Joe, scanning the documents would not have prevented anything.”

The Department’s head of motor vehicle licensing, Jackie Benboom, says the scanning practice could make catching and prosecuting people who submit fraudulent documents easier than the earlier system.

“For over-the-counter you could have an individual come in and submit their documentation and they walk out with their driver’s license in their hand … with central issue, it allows the Department to take a look and review those documents prior to, and instead of handing the document to the individual and then walk out the door and we have to chase it and may never get it back again, you’re able to actually stop the license from being mailed out to the individual.”

That committee has wrapped up two straight days of hearings in the Capital in Jefferson City.