UNION — Some local businesses have gotten a taste of Hollywood recently and it ended up costing them a lot more than the price of a movie ticket.
In a statement released Monday afternoon, Union County Sheriff David Taylor announced that counterfeit money is being circulated throughout the county. These counterfeit bills, however, come with a twist worthy of a contrivance in a low-budget movie comedy as they actually advertise the fact that they are counterfeit.
Taylor said that not only are bills poor quality counterfeits, they actually have the words “For Motion Picture Use Only” stamped on the front of them. On the $100 bills those words are next to the forehead of Benjamin Franklin and all the letters in them are capitalized. Below it and in smaller print but also in all capital letters are the words “This Note In Not Legal. It Is To Be Used For Motion Pictures.”
On the back of the bill, the words “Motion Picture Use Only” are printed along the top of the bill in all capital letters.
Taylor said that while so far most of the counterfeit bills in Union County have been $100 bills there are also similar $5, $20, and $50 counterfeits circulating throughout the Upstate. He said that in Union County there have so far been a total of 10 incidents involving counterfeit bills passed off at local businesses, not only in the county but also in the City of Union and the Town of Jonesville.
So far, in the incidents reported to his office, Taylor said the counterfeits have cost the local businesses affected almost a thousand dollars.
Taylor said that the counterfeiters are passing the bills by going into convenience stores when the staff is very busy and easily distracted as they attempt to wait on customers as quickly as possible. He said that in those instances the clerks simply don’t notice they’ve got a $100 bill and put into the cash register without looking at them closely and giving the counterfeiters real money in exchange.
In order to avoid falling victim to the counterfeiters, Taylor urged not only employees at convenience and other stores to look closely at the money they receive, but also customers. He pointed out that with smaller bills in circulation it is very possible that a customer at a store might get a counterfeit back with their change and so he urged everyone, both store employees and customers, to look close at the bills they are handling.
Anyone who thinks they may have a counterfeit bill is urged to call the Union County Sheriff’s Office at 864-429-1613.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or email@example.com.