Indictments handed down in fake ID ring at UGA - CBS46 News

Indictments handed down in fake ID ring at UGA

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Underage drinking at colleges across the country, not just at the University of Georgia, is a huge problem. But UGA police said a large-scale fake ID ring helped keep the alcohol flowing.

On Thursday, 20 college students, a majority from UGA, were indicted for multiple counts of false identification documents.

Police Chief Jimmy Williamson said their investigation began in 2011 after two roommates got into an argument over one of their alleged roles in the fake ID operation. The roommate reported the activity to campus police, who began an investigation.

Williamson said they gave students the opportunity to come forward. If students gave police the fake IDs they purchased, they wouldn't face criminal charges. In return, students had to give sworn testimony to help with the investigation.

The ringleaders in the ID theft ring were identified by UGA police as William Trosclair, charged with 16 counts of false identification documents, and Tyler Ruby, charged with 18 counts of the same charge.

Williamson said they used other students to collect personal information for the IDs and delivered the products for between $50 and $100.

"No fake IDs, no crybabies," Sachin Patel said. That is Patel's motto for selling alcohol to minors.  Bottom line, he won't do it.

"We don't want the liability on our end, also want to be able to sleep better at night knowing there isn't an 18-year-old out with a bottle of alcohol we sold," Sachin Patel said.

Patel runs the family-owned business Five Points Bottle Shop. Patel's location at 1655 South Lumpkin St. is notorious for confiscating fake IDs and real IDs in the hands of the person it doesn't belong to.

"We want to take those IDs off the streets and confiscate them and keep them," Patel said. 

Patel said his business prides itself on selling only to people 21 years old and older.  Patel contends many businesses in Athens turn a blind eye to fake IDs just to make a profit.

"A lot of places are looking for the volumes, kids trying to get into bars. They flash it out of their wallet, they are in," Patel said.

Williamson said the indicted students will have a period of time to turn themselves in, or warrants will be issued for their arrests.

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