The Regina Police Service is issuing an advisory after the arrest of a 19 year-old female for uttering counterfeit currency and having counterfeit money in her possession. The bills seized in this investigation are counterfeit 100-dollar bills; most of them bearing the same serial number. Police believe there may be other counterfeit bills in circulation and other victims that have not yet reported to police.
On Wednesday, August 3, 2011, at about 1:30 p.m., police were dispatched to the Southland Mall for a report of a female passing what was believed to be a counterfeit 100-dollar bill. Security staff at the mall had the suspect in custody. Preliminary investigation led to the discovery of three businesses in the mall that had received counterfeit currency from a female matching the description of the person in custody. Police also seized several bills from this individual, which were confirmed to be counterfeits. Most of the bills bear the serial number JMM1M01001 and all are Canadian 100-dollar bills. The 19 year-old female suspect was charged and made an initial court appearance on seven counterfeit-related charges. Further investigation led to eight more counterfeit-related charges against the same person.
Nineteen year-old Shauna Rose THOMPSON, DOB: 1991-08-29, of Nanaimo, British Columbia, has been charged with 14 charges of Uttering (counterfeit currency) contrary to section 452(a) of the Criminal Code and one charge of Possession of Counterfeit Currency [450 CC]. THOMPSON made her first court appearance in Provincial Court on Thursday August 4, 2011 and then again on Friday, August 5, 2011 on the additional charges.
It is not known, at this time, how many counterfeit 100-dollar bills may be in circulation in Regina. The Regina Police Service believes there are other businesses in Regina that may have received counterfeit currency. Anyone who discovers that he/she is in possession of counterfeit currency should report to police.
Business owners should educate staff on the security features of Canadian currency. The website of the Bank of Canada has very detailed information at http://www.bankofcanada.ca/en/banknotes/index.html . Business owners should also counsel staff on what to do if they suspect currency to be counterfeit. The method of payment in any transaction has to be acceptable to the seller, so a business may refuse to take currency suspected to be counterfeit. Instead, employees should note a description of the person and phone police immediately. It may be that the individual in possession of the bill is unaware that it is counterfeit. An investigation by police would determine the appropriate action. Anyone who comes into possession of a bill suspected to be counterfeit should contact police. Police also remind the public that anyone who knowingly passes a counterfeit bill is committing a criminal offence and is subject to prosecution.
More information about detecting counterfeit currency can be found at the website of the Bank of Canada at www.bankofcanada.ca. The Regina Police Service thanks the media and the public for their attention to this matter.