U.S. Secret Service
Arrives in Pembroke
It's not often that
the U.S. Secret Service finds itself in the rural town of Pembroke,
On Thursday June
20, Sr. Agent Mike Casper spoke to about 30 bankers and business people
crammed into the dining room at Sheff's Seafood Restaurant. Casper came
to town with a message, "It doesn't pay to be a counterfeiter."
"Even if you
print just one one-dollar bill, you're going to jail for one year,"
said in this region, the most common type of counterfeit bills are made
by inkjet printers. This type is recognizable because printers squirt
yellow and blue ink dots on top of each other to make green appear on
"Dots are what
I see every day," he said.
According to Agent
Casper, $30 million of counterfeit money has been passed through the
U. S. in the first five months of this year. $6.8 million was seized
before it went into circulation.
Abroad, the market
for counterfeit U.S. bills is enormous. $81 million was seized last
year, and the bulk of it was printed in Columbia.
counterfeit (money) and drugs go hand in hand," said Casper.
Casper said $20
bills are the most commonly copied in numbers, although there are enough
fake $100 bills to out-value the twenties.
Less than 0.02 percent
of counterfeit money is in circulation in the U. S., making it unlikely
that one would get passed to an ordinary citizen. In foreign black markets
like Russia, it is possible to find that 70 percent of U.S. bills being
UNCP police officers
Capt. Larry McNeill and Sgt. McDuffie Cummings Jr. were also in attendance
at the presentation, which was hosted by First Bank of Pembroke.
Capt. McNeill said
university cafeteria workers turned over two counterfeit $20 bills last
fall. Whoever passed the bills that day was not caught.
If you suspect you
are carrying suspicious money, he said, you should turn it over to local
law enforcement immediately.
thing for people to remember is that once you walk out into the parking
lot with counterfeit (money), you're stuck with it," McNeill said.
The U.S. treasury
hopes that new security features added in 1996 will deter counterfeiters
and help the public identify imitation $20, $50 and $100 bills.
is being used in the numerals on the lower-right hand corners, so when
cashiers place money in the till, they can see if the tilting the bill
makes the green number turn black.
An enlarged, off-center
presidential portrait reduces wear and tear while added detail is harder
to replicate. Fine-line printing behind the portrait and back illustration
make scanning the bills difficult without obvious wavy lines appearing.
A watermark, security
thread, micro-printing and red and blue fibers are also located throughout
the bills. In 2000, new $5 and $10 bills were released to complete the
something rotten in WalMart when this bill was passed," said Casper
as he held up a laminated $100 bill. He passed it around the room and
commented on the simulated watermark and fake polymer strip.
"Is it a huge
problem? Not really," he said. "But is takes selling a lot
of Snickers bars to make up the losses."
to University Newswire