Counterfeit $100 Bills Are Circulating in the Bighorn Basin

Written by on November 6, 2019

There may be over $100,000 of counterfeit $100 dollar bills circulating in the Bighorn Basin right now.

Several counterfeit hundreds were reported in Thermopolis this past week and the same counterfeit bills were found in Red Lodge. Julie Matthews, Chief of Police of   the Thermopolis Police Department says their scam is making purchases with the phony bills, then taking the change.

While the Thermopolis PD has a possible conspirator in custody, the distributor of the bills has yet to be caught and its unknown where he’s been and if he’s passed the bills off elsewhere. Anyone who’s accepted $100 in the past few weeks should check the bills, and local business owners need to remain aware. Chief Matthews says these are very sophisticated counterfeits.

The serial number of all the fake Franklins is the same: LB45440078L. There are several other characteristics that can help identify these counterfeit bills:

  • There is usually a yellow circle with red Chinese writing on the back of a $100 bill. If the writing is absent or that spot looks like its been tampered with, that’s a sign of the forgery
  • The edges of a regular $100 bill are evenly cut. These bills are cut extremely well but still have rough, uneven edges
  • Get a pen for marking money – it leaves a yellow mark on legitimate bills. The counterfeit bills will leave a brown mark.
  • If someone makes multiple purchases with $100 bills

If you happen to be in possession of a counterfeit hundred, contact your local police department as soon as possible.


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