RCMP officers have seized $1.15-million of counterfeit $100 bills at a Richmond apartment – one of the largest hauls in British Columbia history according to police.
The Federal Commercial Crime Section monitored the forgers for two months before they raided the residential property on Dec. 11. Officers seized the unfinished notes and money-making equipment. Four men in their 20s were arrested.
Sergeant Tony Farahbakhchian, Pacific region counterfeit co-ordinator for the unit, said officers were able to secure the notes before any were released into circulation.
Five stacks of the uncut sheets of bills, approximately six inches high, were on display at the press conference held at RCMP headquarters in Surrey, B.C.
“Just before the Christmas season would have been a good opportunity for these bad guys to try and pass a number of these notes when the tellers at the stores are busy,” he said.
Sgt. Farahbakhchian said the counterfeiters were likely trying to rush out the fake $100 bills before the new polymer notes, in circulation since Nov. 14, became more common.
And, he said, the public is vulnerable as they don’t take advantage of the security features on Canadian currency.
“The majority of people don’t look for all the features like the holograms and the security threads,” he said. “These guys know that most businesses don’t look for all these features and so they try to make a half decent note in the hope that it will pass.”