Forged Cayman Islands notes resurface

| 10/06/2009

(CNS): Over the last few weeks a number of counterfeit CI$50 notes among others have appeared in circulation and have been turned over to the RCIPS’ Financial Crime Unit. AS a result of the continuing emergence of counterfeit Cayman Islands currency notes the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) and the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS) are urging the public to remain vigilant. Detective Sergeant Michael Montaque of the Financial Crimes Unit (FCUS) said people should not let there guard down and keep looking out for them.

“I’m particularly asking the business community to pay close attention to notes they receive,” Sgt. Montaque added noting that successful detection and prosecution in counterfeitcurrency cases is largely due to the public’s vigilance. The FCU urges business owners not to rely on the counterfeit detection pen for Cayman Islands banknotes. One quick and discreet way to check if a note is genuine is to keep a wet sponge handy and discreetly rub your wet fingers on the note.  If the ink smudges then the note is a counterfeit.

 “If you receive a counterfeit note, or suspect one to be counterfeit, we ask that you observe and note the appearance of the person passing the note, as well as that of any companions. Do not return the note to the passer. Instead, tag the note with a copyof the transaction receipt and call the police. If you have counterfeit report forms issued by the Financial Crime Unit, obtain as much information as possible from the person passing the note and write it on the form.”  

He emphasizes that the public should not try to apprehend or hold persons presenting these notes. By taking the measures listed above, the FCU will have the best chance at catching these persons.

“Sometimes people who are unsure whether a note is counterfeit or not go ahead and deposit the note with the bank,” Montaque added. “Unfortunately, once it has been mixed with other notes it loses its evidential quality. We therefore ask that any suspect notes be tagged with the transaction receipt, placed in a protective covering such as an envelope and set aside for verification by the Financial Crime Unit.”

CIMA said genuine Cayman Islands currency notes bear a watermark in the form of a turtle, which can be seen when the note is held up to the light. The watermark on the C series notes also includes the letters ‘CIMA’ above the turtle. However it’s important to note that some counterfeit notes also have the watermark so you should not rely solely on this feature to determine if the bill is genuine.

Each C series banknote has a metallic thread running through the note from top to bottom. The thread is imprinted with the words ‘Cayman Islands.’ In counterfeit notes the thread, if it appears, usually looks transparent or white instead of metallic, and sometimes has a grey shadow alongside it.

Each $50 C series note has a silver foil imprint of a stingray on the edge of the note, to the right of the portrait of Her Majesty the Queen. On counterfeit notes, the imprint usually loses the silver colour and appears a flat grey.

Genuine $100 notes carry a shimmery, silver-coloured mark (called a hologram) in the shape of a Cayman schooner. This mark changes colour when the note is tilted. On most counterfeit notes, this feature appears a flat bluish-grey.

The serial number on each banknote is different. When receiving notes, you should therefore examine the serial number for any signs of tampering. You should also pay attention to the feel of the paper on which notes are printed. Genuine notes are printed on special paper that has a rough texture. Counterfeit notes have a smooth texture and will smudge when exposed to water.

Pay attention to notes of all denominations – from one-dollar bills upwards. 

The Monetary Authority advises the public that it is not able to compensate people who come in possession of counterfeit notes. This makes it even more important for the public to be vigilant when handling currency notes. The RCIPS form for reporting counterfeit money can be found on the CIMA website, under “Currency.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Category: Local News

Comments (2)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Anonymous says:

    Well to be fair, how many shopkeepers are going to take in a knowingly false note and take the shoppers decription and then hand that note to the police and lose out on the money/change/goods?

    Obviously if somebody receives a note and finds it is fake, they will palm it off to somebody else, nobody can afford to lose out.

    If the recipient is supposed to take the loss then surely this is encouraging the conman that his tricks are working

  2. Anonymous says:

    I don’t understand something here. The RCIP is telling business people to attach the forged note to a receipt and then document the apperance of the person/s issuing the note and then let them go with the goods/ items "bought" However the businesses will not be reimbursed.

    I call what these people are doing stealing. Why shouldn’t businesses stop them? To me, this is the same as somebody walking into a store and taking items without paying. And that is stealing. Last I remember stealing was a crime.