MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Murfreesboro Police and federal agents have confiscated a supply of high quality counterfeit cash that they suspect was meant to be used on Black Friday.
Investigators said someone is dumping a wave of high-quality counterfeit cash on the market just in time for the busiest shopping day of the year. Officials said they have collected more bogus bills in the past couple of weeks then the past several months combined.
"Everybody pays the price when counterfeit money is passed. We encourage businesses to use security features that are out there," said Kyle Evans with the Murfreesboro Police Department.
Rebecca Mills with Mills Family Pharmacy uses special pens that can detect bogus bills, but admits it's hard to check every single transaction with so many shoppers during the holiday season.
"It's very hard to scrutinize every bill. A lot of times we don't check all our 20s," said Mills.
Police said that a local counterfeit bill ring may be manufacturing the bills, mostly 20s, and then pass them without notice during the Black Friday rush. Investigators say it is very difficult to track the counterfeiters, but they are pursuing leads.
The crime victimizes both merchants and customers. When the Secret Service confiscates a counterfeit bill it is a clean loss. The victim is usually not reimbursed.
The best way to protect for consumers to protect themselves is to use a credit card, or get cash from the bank. Banks often do the best job of catching counterfeits and are less likely to pass them.