Syracuse man arrested after investigation into counterfeit bills

Syracuse Police made an arrest after investigating complaints stemming from merchants and retailers receiving counterfeit $100 bills for purchases.

The investigation started in early June, and involved fast food restaurants, coffee shops, drug stores and other big box stores. Police believe the bills were passed in Syracuse, as well as other places in Onondaga, Oneida and Oswego Counties.

38-year-old Cornelius Q. Johnson was arrested after a joint investigation involving the Syracuse Police Departmentâ??s Forgery and Financial Crimes Section and Special Agents of the United States Secret Service.

Johnson was charged with 92 counts of criminal possession of a forged instrument. Police found him in possession of 92 counterfeit $100 bills.

Johnson was arrested on similar charges by Syracuse Police in 2008, and served a two-to-four year prison term.

This is a list of the counterfeit $100 bill serial numbers being passed around Syracuse.

FF70978204B, BA27179985A, AB33085651W, KB39553487H, AB11019243L, CB63735270C, D75646662C, FL58539363C, KB18440233G.

If you were recently given a $100 bill that matches any of these serial numbers, contact Syracuse Police.

Syracuse Police gave these tips on how to spot a counterfeit bill.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. ) 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

For more information, visit the Secret Service website



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