Illinois Pulls CDL After Trucker Refuses Retest

May 10, 1999

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Ricardo Guzman, a trucker involved in a 1994 crash that left six children dead, lost his commercial driver's license this weekend after he ignored a judge's order to retake his CDL test.

Guzman has been at the center of a scandal involving Illinois license centers. Two employees of the license office that issued Guzman his license were later indicted for their alleged involvement in a scam where workers took bribes in exchange for issuing CDLs for drivers who could not pass the test. More than 4,000 truck drivers have been ordered to retake licensing exams because of the scandal.
Guzman had filed suit, arguing that the state had no authority to make him retake his test. His attorney unsuccessfully argued that Secretary of State Jesse White had singled out Guzman, ordering him to be retested because of political fallout from the accident. The family of the dead children is suing Guzman, and their attorney has alleged Guzman did not get his license legally.
However, a Cook County judge Friday decreed that Guzman must be retested no later than Saturday. "We're dealing with a privilege, not a right," the judge told Guzman's attorney. Guzman was ordered to take both written and driving tests, but never showed.
Attorneys for White said Guzman's half-dozen speeding tickets and a similar number of accidents, along with the "suspicious circumstances" surrounding his licensing made the retesting a necessity.

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