MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota’s Department of Public Safety Driver and Vehicle Services Division (DVS) has completed a review of nearly 100,000 personalized license plates, and found dozens that might be offensive or obscene.

That investigation came after an anti-Muslim license plate was discovered on a truck in the St. Cloud area, leading to a sweeping review of every other plate in the state.

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The Department of Motor Vehicle Services reviewed every one of the state’s 98,564 personalized plates, and flagged 51 as possibly offensive.

“Personalized plates cannot offend public morals or decency,” Bruce Gordon, director of communications with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, said.

A team of public safety officials spent months closely inspecting personalized license plates to find any that might be considered “obscene, indecent or immoral.”

“We took the entire list. We went through each and every one of them to find out if any one of them violated the law,” Gordon said.

Minnesota law specifically spells out what could be a violation: “No words or combination of letters placed on these plates may be used for commercial advertising, be of an obscene, indecent, or immoral nature, or be of a nature that would offend public morals or decency.”

The investigation isn’t yet complete, and state officials won’t reveal which 51 plates might be offensive.

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So we looked ourselves and found many that could be questionable:

  • COPH8R
  • STFU
  • 370HSSV (which looks normal, but if you stand on your head you’ll see a very different story)

Gov. Mark Dayton ordered the sweeping review after the anti-Muslim plate “FMSLMS” showed up in St. Cloud. One Muslim community leader in St. Cloud questioned in March how it could slip past the DMV.

“That is the F-word. And everybody knows what the F-word means,” Haji Yusuf said.

The driver who requested the anti-Muslim plate explained on his application it was the name of his band.

Now, state officials want fresh explanations from 51 drivers whose personal plates could be revoked.

“We’ll send out a letter to the owner of those plates, asking them to provide justification as to why they should be allowed to keep those plates,” Gordon said.

The state public safety department says that it’s likely some offensive plates will be revoked when the investigation is complete.

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Meanwhile, it now has four separate teams reviewing every personal license plate application to prevent a repeat of what happened.