HOUSTON - An undercover sting has netted the arrests of two state-certified vehicle inspectors.
Harris County Precinct 4 deputy constables said the mechanics were caught on video giving passing grades to cars that were not properly inspected.
The state of Texas requires drivers to keep state-certified safety and emissions checks current on an annual basis.
On Wednesday, deputies arrested Shay Lee Madden, 31, and Cody Wayne Wilson, 22. Both men had been employed at Vehicle Inspections by Mogo at 15645 FM 529 in northwest Harris County.
According to court documents, Madden passed a vehicle without testing the exhaust emissions of that vehicle. Investigators allege he purposely input wrong information into a state-certified computer in order for the older vehicle to pass inspection.
Typically the motivation for such crimes is to earn extra money from drivers who need their car, truck or van to pass inspection. Those drivers are sometimes willing to pay more, but the practice is illegal.
"I don't have any reason to do that. I make perfectly good money here. I have worked for this company for 13 years," Madden said just before his arrest.
Wilson is charged with a similar offense.
Madden and Wilson have been charged with tampering with a government record.
A third man, identified by deputies as Syed Zamin Bukhari, 53, is also charged with the same felony. He is employed at Houston's Best Service Center at 2650 Tidwell Road in northeast Harris County, deputies said. As of late Wednesday, Bukhari had not been arrested.
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