North Platte Police say they’ve arrested two people for attempting to use phony money at a bank. Investigator John Deal says a teller at Nebraskaland National Bank received what was believed to be a counterfeit bill on Monday afternoon.
The bank employee said a vehicle came through the drive-thru with a female driver and male passenger. The woman gave the teller a $100 bill and asked for change. Deal says the teller immediately knew the bill was fake because it had “FOR MOTION PICTURE USE ONLY” on the front of it.
The teller seized the money and the vehicle left. The teller got the plate number of the vehicle. A short time later a citizen reported the same vehicle for reckless driving. Another officer was able to find the vehicle parked in the area but wasn’t able to witness any reckless driving.
The vehicle was occupied by 19 year old Baillie Simmerman in the driver’s seat and 19 year old Anthony Fleecs in the passenger seat. They fit the description that the teller provided. Both were transported to the police station for an interview. It was learned in the interview that Fleecs allegedly got the money from a friend but neither subject would share that friend’s name with the officers. Both were arrested for 1st degree forgery.
Deal says the North Platte Police Department has received several reports of bogus bills being used at area businesses. One kind is “Motion Picture Money” or “Prop Bills.” The other is referred to as “Chinese Training Money.” He says these bills have red Chinese symbols printed on the front and back of them. Deal says they do not have the security features that real bills have such as color-shifting ink, security strips and watermarks. He says the “Motion Picture Money” also lacks security features.
Deal says counterfeit pens should be effective on both types of bills and the best way to tell if they are fake is by just taking a brief amount of time to inspect and feel the bill. They are real enough looking at a glance to be passed if the recipient isn’t paying attention. While it is not illegal to merely possess the bills, it is a felony to intentionally attempt to pass them as real currency. Investigator Deal says North Platte Police ask that citizens and businesses be vigilant in watching for these types of bills and to call police immediately if someone attempts to pass them as real currency.