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After Two Incidents, Secret Service Warns Of Counterfeit Money Circulating in Flagler

| August 31, 2012

counterfeit money warning

Federal authorities’ advisory on counterfeit money in Flagler County. Click on the image for larger view.

Wednesday evening (Aug. 29), 41-year-old Joao Diamantino, a resident of Westover Lane in Palm Coast, was at Wendy’s, ordering food. He used a $100 bill to pay. Brittany Bizzozzaro, the shift manager that evening, tested the bill and found it to be a counterfeit once she compared the bill to a reference sheet provided by Wendy’s management. She called the cops.

Diamantino hadn’t quite done anything wrong: he told a Flagler County Sheriff’s deputy that the money was part of an $800 withdrawal from his bank account at Prosperity Bank. He had no knowledge of the bills being counterfeit, according to a police report. He gave the deputy three bills for inspection. Two of them were suspected to be counterfeit, in addition to the one the Wendy’s manager had turned over earlier. The bills were seized and entered into evidence, though no action was taken against Diamantino.

Friday afternoon, the Flagler County Sherifff’s Office circulated an advisory to local businesses and residents, to be on the alert for counterfeit bills circulating in the area.

Last week, the Orlando Regional Office of the Secret Service notified law enforcement agencies in their region of suspected counterfeit bills being circulated in and around the Orlando-Daytona area, the sheriff’s office reports. Merchants are advised to check the font of the “Federal Reserve Note.” The counterfeit version is different than the genuine. The Treasury Seal on the counterfeit is also missing part of the key bit, and there is a space in the bottom of the shield.

The incident at Wendy’s isn’t the only one reported recently. The night of August 16, Richard Vieitez, a 38-year-old resident of Ryland Place in Palm Coast, drove up in his truck to the drive-through window at McDonald’s at Town Center and ordered. He paid with a $100 bill. An employee found the bill suspicious. A test was inconclusive. A police report described the bill as “accurate but appeared to be very old and questionable.”

Vieitez told a deputy that he’d recently conducted payroll for the small business he owns (Hot Spot Tanning Salon), and showed the cop the ledgers showing the withdrawals from Bank of America. The cash examined was legitimate, but the bill given to McDonald’s cashier was further examined and was found to have inconsistencies. The bill, the report states, “was identified as having a George Washington picture in the center and an Abraham Lincoln face in the hologram. Also the bill showed a currency strip embedded in the note that read ‘five dollars’ instead of ‘one hundred dollars.’ The counterfeit bill was taken into possession and stored as evidence at the Flagler County Operations Center.” Vieitez was issued a property receipt.

If merchants feel they have received a counterfeit bill, they should contact the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office at (386) 313-4911.

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13 Responses for “After Two Incidents, Secret Service Warns Of Counterfeit Money Circulating in Flagler”

  1. Well... says:

    So who goes to buy Wendy’s with a $100 bill? The banks run large bills through a machine that checks all security features. While not improbably it is highly unlikely he received 3 large bills. Counterfeit money does circulate and many of the counterfeit money that is brought into banks comes from fast food restaurants. This is why money is run through a machine to check all security features on bills.

  2. Clint says:

    Let me get this straight. The 100 dollar bills came from Banks. So that means we can’t trust the money that the banks give us ? Great, now I have to worry about getting arrested for possibly passing fake money that came from my bank. Thats it…I’m only going to pay for products with 100 dollar’s worth of PENNIES !

  3. Ben Blakely says:

    Have you seen how much it cost to buy a family of 5 a meal at McDonalds? Close to $50!
    If you go into a restaurant or even a crummy diner grade restaurant, the tab easily hits $80 with tips. So seeing someone produce a $100 bill is not so unsual any longer in this world of worthless obama bucks.

  4. Mike L says:

    Well…,

    It doesn’t matter that the machine checks for the security features. If you wash the ink off of a $5 bill and print a $100 bill on it, it’s going to seem real to a machine. It will be on U.S. currency paper, have a legit security strip, and a watermark. It will even pass the pen test that every fast food restaurant or gas station will use to verify the bill’s authenticity. With the high volume of currency that goes through our local banks every day, it is impossible to catch every counterfeit unless each one was hand inspected.

  5. LivesinFlagler says:

    I have worked in a bank environment for over 6 years. Having done the job as a teller, I can tell you that you do try your best to catch all counterfit money that comes through but sometimes it doesn’t happen. Devices such as pens and counters (with detect capabilites) does NOT always work.

    The best way to find them is buy looking at the markings and also by feel. I have personally caught many bills over the years.

    The man at Wendys is now out that money he had to turn over.

    My advice is to always feel your money and look at it when you get a withdrawal from a bank.

  6. Ginger says:

    not only 100.00s check the small bills too! I had a 10.00 one that was fake!

  7. tulip says:

    When a person makes a withdrawal from a bank, after the teller hands over the money, maybe the customer should ask the teller to check the bills for authenticity before leaving the teller station. If 10’s or 20’s are withdrawn via the ATM, that can be risky, as there is no live teller to see the bills.

  8. Ben Blakely says:

    If you think about it, the ‘official’ currency obama is flooding the country with is actually worthless. It is backed by the full faith and credit of the Federal Government. And you know who is at the head of the Federal government.
    Are you that gullible to trust Baroke Obama?

    • Hill says:

      The Obama Administration is responsible for every bad aspect of our government and daily lives right? lol, c’mon, the root of our national financial situation stems from wayyy before President Obama. Do some research on the Federal Reserve. Its frustrating that everything bad in our nation gets blamed on our president of only 4 years!! When it took a lot longer than 4 years to get our nation into this financial mess. & guess what!? It’s going to take a lot longer than 1 presidential term to get us out of it!!

  9. Sarah says:

    I agree, I have never hear so much money floating around fake. I have to think that Obama has something to do about it. You can go to jail for this, Obama is a horrible president and he is burning up all the money. Maybe everyone will realize when all the government assistance stops, because everything is out of money. Somehow Obama will make it possible like the food stamps that were given with no limit……………huh wonder who did that……………nice…………

  10. Sarah says:

    I agree, I have never hear so much money floating around fake. I have to think that Obama has something to do about it. You can go to jail for this, Obama is a horrible president and he is burning up all the money. Maybe everyone will realize when all the government assistance stops, because everything is out of money. Somehow Obama will make it possible like the food stamps that were given with no limit.huh wonder who did that.nice.

    • sybil says:

      I cannot believe that this country has had over 35 presidents who made mistakes and very little or nothing was said. Now Mr. Obama is getting blamed for every little thing that goes wrong in America. I live in a state where people have been getting food stamps, and free rent just because they know how to work the system, and it has nothing to do with who the President of the United States is.

  11. Gia says:

    Banks scrutinized bills with electronic devices. These crooks knew the bills were counterfeit. You can be sure (I hope) the treasury dpt will be watched these crap.

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