BRUNSWICK, Ga. – Two Georgia men were arrested Thursday and charged with manufacturing and distributing counterfeit currency in Brunswick, Savannah, Jesup and Jacksonville, Florida.
The investigation, conducted by the Glynn County Police Department and the U.S. Secret Service, revealed that the men, Cyril Eversly, 29, and Kasean Tillman, 39, both of Brunswick, passed tens of thousands of dollars in counterfeit currency in those areas, authorities siad.
The counterfeit bills affected retail stores and even individuals who might have received the bills when cashing their payroll checks or receiving change from purchases.
Eversly and Tillman were both charged with one count of forgery in the first degree.
“Technology has forever changed the way we do business, making everyday financial transactions a prime target for fraud,” said Savannah Agent in Charge Glen Kessler. “The Secret Service, in conjunction with its many law enforcement partners continues to successfully combat these crimes by adapting our investigative methodologies, and educating the public.”
If a retailer or consumer suspects a bill is counterfeit, they should compare the bill to a note of the same series and denomination that is known to be genuine, authorities said.
The note in question should display the proper watermark as well as the proper security thread that is consistent with that denomination.
“By using a low-cost ultraviolet light, retailers can quickly identify the genuine bills from the counterfeit bills by using the security features already present in the genuine bills,” Kessler said.
As the holiday season approaches, people need to check bills extra carefully, said Gil Smith, News4Jax crime and safety analyst.
"Retailers are getting more business. People are spending more money for Thanksgiving and the holidays, and people who pass counterfeit bills know this. They know retailers are busier and may not be as cautious," Smith said. "But it's very important that they stop and take that extra time to check out that bill to make sure it's not counterfeit."
Authorities said the investigation is ongoing.