|WKSR: Archived News
Counterfeit Bills Showing Up In Athens
Posted on December 03, 2012
It may be the season of goodwill but authorities in one Limestone County city are reminding residents not everyone is in the Christmas spirit.
As they do every year, a few unknown Grinches are spreading counterfeit bills in local businesses, and merchants and consumers should be vigilant, said Athens Police Chief Floyd Johnson.
"It's that time of year when a lot of cash is changing hands," he said. "We suggest people are careful and check their money."
So far this season, merchants who discovered fake bills while counting receipts at close of business have turned in counterfeit 100 dollar, 50 dollar and one dollar bills.
"We're seeing a few here and a few there," he said. "They are not a major problem yet. We're just making people aware of it."
Merchants often use pens made with special ink to detect inconsistencies in the printing but Johnson said the markers are not fool-proof.
"The pens are good to use but they are not 100 percent," he said. "Sometimes you get false readings. The big thing is to look at it and feel it."
Johnson said anyone who has a question about a bill's authenticity should take the bill or bills to their local police or sheriff’s department.
The U.S. Secret Service provides tips and comparison photos of real and fake money on its website and recommends comparing the portrait on a bill, the Federal Reserve and Treasury seals, the border, the serial numbers and the paper.