Counterfeit $100s in F'ville

Tue, 02/10/2009 - 4:31pm
By: Ben Nelms

It may be called funny money, but there is nothing funny about it. There has been a confirmed case of two counterfeit $100 bills being passed in Fayetteville Feb. 1 and unconfirmed reports of two others in the city.

Fayetteville Police Investigator Jeff Harris said the two bills were taken for payment at Cinemark 10 Movies on Ga. Highway 85. He said the bills were taken some time during the day and identified later.

Harris said both bills taken at Cinemark were actually $5 bills that had been bleached and printed to look like $100 bills. The bills pass the scrutiny of the counterfeit detection pen customarily used by businesses, Harris said, since they are actual bills. But once held up to a light the watermark for the true denomination is visible, he said.

The Citizen also received unconfirmed reports of two additional fake $100 bills that surfaced in Fayetteville last week that were doctored in the same way.

Harris said the Secret Service has been alerted about the bills. He requested that anyone receiving a counterfeit bill contact Fayetteville Police at 770-461-4441. Harris added that if in doubt, merchants can take a suspect bill to their bank.

Police in Peachtree City and Tyrone said Monday they have had received no recent calls about counterfeit bills.

But, the Peachtree City Police Department is warning local businesses and residents of counterfeit $100 bills that have been passed in Fayette County recently.

These bills cannot be detected by the common “marker” test used by many businesses, police said. Residents are urged to check any money carefully before accepting it, police said.

One way to detect counterfeit bills is to hold them up to the light. That should reveal a security strip embedded in the bill that features micro-printing of the letters USA, the denomination of the bill and a flag, according to the federal reserve bank.

Also visible when the bill is held up to the light is a watermark depicting the same historical person featured in the front portrait on the bill.

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