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'Phony' money shows up locally

Counterfeit money has shown up at several locations in Washington County. Sheriff Zach Jacobsen warns businesses that they should be vigilant in checking cash. 

Washington County Sheriff’s Office reported on Wednesday that they have seen a large influx of counterfeit bills in the area.

The office, according to Sheriff Zach Jacobsen, has seen about $3,000 worth of counterfeit bills in the county. The bills are being used at various businesses to purchase items.

According to officials at Interpol (the International Criminal Police Organization), the use of counterfeit money is detrimental to the economy and the development of new photographic and printing technologies has made counterfeiting extremely cheap and easy.

The big question is can anything be done to prevent a person from becoming a victim of counterfeit currency?

According to Jacobsen, often times criminals will use a yellow highlighter to mark a counterfeit bill so it appears to have already been checked. In this case, many times business employees will see the marking and go ahead and accept the counterfeit bill.

“Businesses should invest in detection pens and other electronic detection equipment,” said Jacobsen.

Office Depot sells a three pack of counterfeit detection pens for $11.99

Jacobsen stated that these particular bills all had the same serial number with the exception of the $20 bills.

“These particular bills had been purchased off a website called, ‘Wish’,” said Jacobsen. “It isn’t always illegal to possess counterfeit bills, but it’s always illegal to use them."

He said businesses and individuals should stay vigilant and report any instances of counterfeit bills immediately to the sheriff’s office.

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Matt McFarland is a reporter for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at 573-518-3616, or at mmcfarland@dailyjournalonline.com.

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