SYRACUSE (WSYR-TV) – A wide-ranging counterfeit money operation was busted in Syracuse, after local businesses reported receiving fake $100 bills.
38-year-old Cornelius Johnson of Syracuse was arrested last Tuesday and charged with 92 counts of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument, after he was found with 92 counterfeit $100 bills.
Cornelius was arraigned and is being held without bail. Police said he was convicted on similar charges in 2009 and received a sentence of 2-4 years in prison.
Since early June, Syracuse Police received numerous complaints from businesses about counterfeit $100 bills, many of which were passed at fast food restaurants, coffee shops, drug stores and big box retailers in Onondaga, Oneida and Oswego Counties.
The bills have one of nine specific serial numbers:
FF70978204B BA27179985A AB33085651W
KB39553487H AB11019243L CB63735270C
D75646662C FL58539363C KB18440233G
Merchants are especially being asked to check any transactions involving the presentment of $100 Federal Reserve Notes. The Syracuse Police Department offers these tips on how to detect counterfeit money:
Look at the money you receive. Compare a suspect note with a genuine note of the same denomination and series, paying attention to the quality of printing and paper characteristics. Look for differences, not similarities.
Genuine currency paper has tiny red and blue fibers embedded throughout. Often counterfeiters try to simulate these fibers by printing tiny red and blue lines on their paper. Close inspection reveals, however, that on the counterfeit note the lines are printed on the surface, not embedded in the paper. It is illegal to reproduce the distinctive paper used in the manufacturing of United States currency.
Genuine serial numbers have a distinctive style and are evenly spaced. The serial numbers are printed in the same ink color as the Treasury Seal. On a counterfeit, the serial numbers may differ in color or shade of ink from the Treasury seal. The numbers may not be uniformly spaced or aligned.
The fine lines in the border of a genuine bill are clear and unbroken. On the counterfeit, the lines in the outer margin and scrollwork may be blurred and indistinct.
On a genuine bill, the saw-tooth points of the Federal Reserve and Treasury seals are clear, distinct, and sharp. The counterfeit seals may have uneven, blunt, or broken saw-tooth points.
The genuine portrait appears lifelike and stands out distinctly from the background. The counterfeit portrait is usually lifeless and flat. Details merge into the background which is often too dark or mottled.
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