A Sayreville man added a new unique way of evading the tolls at the Hudson River crossings: a blackout curtain.

Earlier this month a New Jersey State Police trooper noticed a white Dodge Challenger pass under the gantry with a blackout curtain that dropped over the rear license plate, according to Port Authority spokeswoman Lenis Valens.

The same car was noticed by a Port Authority police officer Friday around 8:30 a.m. when it got caught up in traffic. The officer pulled over the driver before he reached the tunnel. The car had no front plate, officials said.

The driver, Mark Aponte, 28, of the Parlin section of Sayreville, was charged with theft of services, tampering with public records or information and burglar’s tools.

Drivers have used a number of methods to evade the tolls including simple duct tape, and an account that never got paid.

A Florida trucker was caught going through the George Washington Bridge in 2018 with both the front and rear places taped over, Port Authority police told the New York Post. Alejandro Sanchez, 43, told police he did not have an E-ZPass.

In 2017, a Little Ferry trucking company racked up $1 million in unpaid tolls after using a delinquent E-Z account for 13 months.

Dan Alexander is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at dan.alexander@townsquaremedia.com

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