TABC Agents Crackdown on Fake IDs

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It's called Operation Fake Out, but in this operation, no one is fooling authorities.

Dozens of Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission agents went on a stakeout at a number of bars around town November 18. The mission was to find underage drinkers using fake IDs.

"It's a zero tolerance on that type of offense, so everybody is going to jail," said agent Randy Field.

Agents have used Operation Fake Out in areas like Waco and Austin before, but never in Bryan/College Station.

The idea is to educate officers and retailers on how to spot a fake ID and at the same time, allow agents to find leads on those who make them.

"We feel that if a person will manufacture a document like that for a young person to buy alcohol, they may also do it for a fugitive from justice or somebody who is in this country unlawfully or for someone who might want to use it to create identification theft," said sergeant Mitchell Dill.

Agents said the use and manufacture fake IDs is a growing problem. Technological advancements are making them more realistic, easier to make, and therefore easier to get.

Using a cell phone device, agents can simply type in an ID number and within seconds be able to tell whether it really belongs to that person. If not, a simple night out can turn into the worst night ever.

Agents arrested a 19-year-old girl posing as 21. Her ID looked very convincing, but once agents checked the ID number, they found that the number belonged to a 40-year-old male. After some questioning about where she got it, officers cuffed her and took her away.

"You always feel remorse when somebody makes a poor decision. However, it's these folks decision to make," said Dill.

It's a decision that landed violators at least one night behind bars.

Authorities arrested a total of 19 people with violations ranging from using a fake ID to minors in possession of alcohol.