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The funniest cases of making and selling counterfeit money

Last Friday it became known that a citizen of Armenia and a citizen of Russia had tried to sell off a fake note of $1 million to a citizen of Uzbekistan. Counterfeiters wanted to sell it for a half price, $500 thousand. As the examination showed, the fake note had been done very well. The only thing that gave them up was the face-value of the bank note.

Criminals usually produce fake notes of non-existent face-values in order to sell them for an understated price, to use them as a credit insurance, or just to make a fortune by exchanging the fake money. Counterfeit money

Real-looking fake bank notes were made by an American, Zigetta Teckle, 45. The USA authorities confiscated 250 fake bank notes from him, at face-value $1 billion each. The notes were dated the year 1934 and there was the American President, Grover Cleveland, portrayed on them.

According to the police, "the notes were green and waxed, and had some stains on them in order to look old; there were some coupons attached to them, so they would look like governmental bonds".

The fake bank notes were kept in a hiding-place in a flat of an aged married couple. The couple were absolutely sure that the money was real. Zigetta had told them one of his earlier prepared stories: he said the money had been found in the Filipino caves, where they had been left by the insurgents during the World War II. According to the other possible legend, the notes had been found in the hiding-place of Chan Kaisha, where he had left them when escaping from the continental China .

A similar case took place in the city of Twin Falls , Idaho St . The police arrested a man who had tried to bank almost $1 billion in bank notes of face-value $1 million each. Altogether the arrested man had 999 fake notes. He hoped to get a credit in the bank by mortgaging the money, but was arrested right after the bankers noticed the fake notes.

We should also mention that bank notes of $1 million and $1 billion have never existed. In the history of the USA there has only been a note at face-value of $100 thousand with the President Woodrow Wilson portrayed on it. It was printed in the years 1929 and 1934.

In Germany , fake notes of 300, 600, and 1000 euros were found. The bank notes of 300 and 1000 euros had naked girls pictured on them while the 600 euros note showed men naked to the waist. The emblem of the EU made from stars turned into a ring of hearts while the inscription "Euro” was changed to "Eros”. According to the experts, the bank notes had all protection rates and could have been easily taken for real money.

It is usually the passion for easy money that makes the counterfeiters commit a crime. For example, Christopher Ley Smith was detained buying a pack of condoms and cologne with his fake $100 note. The salesman understood right away that there was something wrong about it and called the police. Later, police officers found everything needed for printing fake money in the criminal's flat.

Counterfeit money in Russia and CIS.

In Ekaterinburg, in the slot-machine rooms, fake notes of 1000 rubles have become very popular. The lower part of the note can have an inscription like "a billet for ballet" or "1 thousand bucks". The note’s surface is degraded but the cash-code is read out well.

In Belarus , a group of women-swindlers tried to persuade the pensioners from small villages to exchange their money for the new currency of the allied state of Russia and Belarus called "babki”. The new "babki” were very similar to the Russian rubles. On one of the sides, as it should be, there was Peter I while on the other one there was a portrait of Lenin with his slogan "Study, study, and study". In the upper part of the note there was an inscription "The bank note of the Concrete Bank". Other bank notes had a portrait of Gorbachev on them.

The counterfeiters very often portray modern leaders on fake bank notes. In the Tumen region, the police caught a woman trying to pay off with 500 rubles bank notes with Vladimir Putin portrayed on them. The local Krasnoyarsk bank gave out the pensions in bank notes with the inscriptions "For the glory of Putin!” and “Bootlickers, unite! "United Russia is waiting for you!”

Some time later, the bank refused to exchange these notes, saying they were considered a legal instrument of payment. In 2005, bank notes portraying Yuliya Timoshenko, were very popular in Ukraine .

The scientists keep finding fake money that had been made in different eras. Three years ago an archaeological expedition of the Hermitage found a treasure – a bronze jug and 99 gold coins of the city Kizik. The scientists noticed that there were more than 53 different kinds of coins. Among them they found a first-class counterfeit of that time.

According to the experts, even a modern scientist would have difficulty identifying it because of the good quality of the metal used to make it and the surprisingly precise carving.

Italian scientists found a well-done fake coin that had been minted in South Italia in the 3rd century B.C. Only some time after they noticed the leaden plate under a thin silver coating. What is even more astonishing is that the coin had been made according to technologies that are very similar to the modern ones.

Some methods used by counterfeiters of the remote past were already known. For example, they covered a piece of metal with a thin silver foil and then heated it, so it would fuse with the metal surface. They also used some chemicals to make the metal surface look like gold or silver. Nevertheless, the microstructure of the silver layer of this coin shows that the methods used to make it were more modern than those described above. Probably, it was something similar to electroplates.

It was much easier for ancient tradesmen to distinguish a real coin from a fake one: they used the Archimedean method; in other words, they measured the amount of the forced out water. At present, several dozens of protection rates against counterfeiters are being used.

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12/2008 02/2009


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