We’ve all seen the movies where gangsters have briefcases full of money, or there’s a huge bank robbery, or a rich person has a vault in their home filled with bills. What you might not know is that money is all fake. It’s called prop movie money. While it’s used to entertain the masses in films, it’s now being used by criminals in counterfeit schemes as well.
One of the first accounts took place in Middletown, Ohio. Police are looking for a man who bought cell phones with three $100 bills marked “For Motion Picture Uses” only, according to the report. Two people told police officers that they were selling iPhones, cases, and chargers on the internet for $260. After receiving the $300, the sellers gave the man $40 in change. He then took off running.
According to the Counterfeit Detection Act of 1992, reproduced bills have to be either less than 75% or more than 150% the size of a real bill, and they must be one-sided.
Another case of counterfeit money came up recently in Texas. According to the Copperas Cove police, the counterfeit bills have red Oriental style writing on them. During the investigation, it was discovered that the counterfeit money, which was fashioned as $100, was prop movie money.
The counterfeit money was purchased on the internet, and the man claimed to have distributed the bills at various locations throughout the city. He also claimed that this was done as a form of entertainment, according to police. If citizens attempt to spend this counterfeit money, criminal charges can be filed.
The man, 20-year-old Matthew Bush, was trying to buy computer equipment with the money, and he was caught in early September. He faces three years probation when he gets sentenced on November 5.
Unfortunately, these are not the only cases in which people have used counterfeit money in financial transactions. Sherrif’s offices around the country encourage employers to make sure employees are aware of the possibility of counterfeit bills and to apply due caution when accepting cash.