Counterfeit cheques in the area
Lismore police have charged a man for trying to cash $11,000 worth of fraudulent travellers cheques at a local Post Office.
The 30-year-old man was charged with ‘obtain money by deception’ after he was apprehended for presenting the dodgy American Express travellers cheques on Tuesday morning.
Senior Inspector Michael Hogan said it was the best counterfeit he had ever seen and he has warned businesses in the area to be aware of the scam. He suggested that if you do accept a travellers cheque, always insist on seeing photo ID of the person submitting them.
The only reason the fake cheques were picked up was that they were put through an authenticating machine at the Post Office.
“We were lucky the Post Office was smart enough to hang on to them and contact us,” he said.
Snr Constable Hogan said police were aware of “tens of thousands of dollars” of fraudulent travellers cheques cashed in the Richmond Local Area Command in the past two weeks, but so far only one charge has been laid.
“That’s why we are alerting the public and trying to get on the front foot today,” he said.
The cheques are believed to come from London as part of an online scam.
The man allegedly applied for a job over the internet and advised that he would be employed as a Regional Satellite Officer for a London-based company. He was sent the cheques and told to write his name on them, cash them and keep 10% before forwarding the remainder through Western Union Bank in Nigeria.
Snr Constable Hogan said the police had been in contact with American Express, who are aware of the scam and also with the international police agency INTERPOL.