KAPAA, KAUAI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Police are warning the public to be on the lookout for counterfeit bills circulating on Kauai.
Several vendors at an outdoor market in Kapaa recently reported suspects attempting to use fake $100 bills to pay for merchandise. Most business owners immediately recognized the bills as fakes because they had red Chinese markings.
KPD has recovered several fake $100 bills and each bill has the red Chinese markings printed on it. Detectives warn that suspects will likely try to remove those markings from the bills and they don't know how much counterfeit money is in circulation.
"Particularly at this time of the year, when consumer spending is at its peak and stores are busy, we urge both businesses and consumers to be aware of their money," said acting assistant chief of the Investigative Services Bureau, Richard Rosa. "Once a counterfeit bill is accepted, it can be difficult to track down the suspect or recover funds, so it is important to be on alert. If you suspect a counterfeit bill, call police immediately."
To properly identify counterfeit bills, KPD offers these tips:
- Compare a suspect note with a genuine note of the same denomination and look for differences, not similarities.
- A genuine portrait appears lifelike and stands out from the background, while a counterfeit portrait will appear lifeless and flat.
- The fine lines in the border of a genuine bill are clear and unbroken. On counterfeit, the lines may be broken or indistinct.
- Genuine serial numbers have a distinct style and are evenly spaced, and they are printed in the same ink color as the Treasury seal. If the color of the Treasury Seal does not match the color of the serial number, the bill is fake.
For more tips on how to detect counterfeit money, visit the U.S. Secret Service website at www.secretservice.gov.
Anyone with information on individuals involved in making or using counterfeit bills is asked to call police.