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Feds charge Illinois trucking company owner in alleged CDL fraud

Prosecutors claim owner used hidden microphones to help applicants cheat on exams

Mykola Datkun, 33, of Port Barrington, Illinois, has been charged in an elaborate scheme to allegedly help test-takers cheat on CDL exams. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Federal prosecutors have charged the owner of an Illinois trucking company in an elaborate scheme to help applicants cheat on CDL exams by using hidden microphones and earpieces.

Mykola Datkun, 33, of Port Barrington, Illinois, is accused of directing CDL applicants attempting to cheat on their CDL examinations to his Island Lake, Illinois, testing facility.

Prosecutors claim that he and unnamed co-conspirators provided test-takers with an earpiece, which was synched to the individuals’ phones, and a microphone receiver, also connected to the phones, that was placed near test-takers’ shirt collars.

Datkun was charged on Feb. 14 with one count of conspiracy to produce fraudulent documents.

As of publication, Datkun’s attorney Steven R. Shanin had not responded to FreightWaves’ request seeking comment.

According to court documents, federal prosecutors allege that from 2019 until December 2022, Datkun, owner of Maximum Services of Island Lake, Illinois, helped individuals “cheat on the written Illinois CDL examination.”

The documents allege that Datkun and unnamed co-conspirators listened to the questions from the CDL exams and “agreed to and did relay via the earpiece the answers to the questions in real time to the individuals taking the examination.”

Prosecutors say Datkun and co-conspirators received at least $500 from individuals they allegedly helped cheat on the exams.

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  1. Tom Smith

    Don’t know why, but Chicago area seems to be home to Russian scab companies. And they all seem to drive white Volvos. 🤨

    But one of these did give me my first experience after obtaining (legally) my CDL.

  2. Mark Rasmussen

    Just another Russian getting caught. I’ve been seeing ads where you can get your CDL for free and find work with these carriers. Only they don’t show the name of the carrier just the white Volvo with a dry box. Looks like that outfit out of Elk Grove Village. Used to see them flying across the toll road yapping away in Russisn on CH 15.

  3. Larry Currier

    Politicians decided that just like being a politician anyone can be a truck driver.
    Now everyone in the trucking industry is paying for their mistakes and insurance.
    Truckers need to organize and force companies that use untrained, unskilled driver’s to pay the full amount of their insurance instead of forcing good drivers and well ran companies to foot their expenses.

  4. Nathan Threewitt

    I am a supervisor for a very large mainstream trucking company. What I’m going to day dosent happen with us bc we are union. The one of the big 3 we hall for has been using scabs since the beginning of the Russian invasion. I cannot count the number scab drivers I have dealt with that do not speak or read ANY English what so ever!! They use Google translate to communicate if thar doesn’t work they call someone who can translate the basics. I’ve dealt with at least a 100 in the past 2 years. I know what my guys go through to get a CDL how do you pass one if you can’t read the language or identity road signs? I’ve asked a few that could speak better English what they had to do to get theirs. If I was completely honest NONE of you would believe me. It’s maybe 20% of the requirements CITIZENS have to have and that’s beyond spooky!! 😳😬🤦‍♂️

  5. thomas g dvorshock

    No wonder there are so many east Europeans from Chicago area on the road. Ran into many of them. Most speak little English and don’t know how to drive.

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Clarissa Hawes

Clarissa has covered all aspects of the trucking industry for 16 years. She is an award-winning journalist known for her investigative and business reporting. Before joining FreightWaves, she wrote for Land Line Magazine and If you have a news tip or story idea, send her an email to [email protected] or @cage_writer on X, formerly Twitter.