Iloilo City police tells public to watch out for fake money

(Photo Courtesy of Bombo Radyo Iloilo)

By: Jennifer P. Rendon

The Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) warned the public against fake peso bills being circulated in the advent of the Christmas Season.

The ICPO issued the warning after the arrest of a 20-year-old man for possession of a fake P500 bill.

“I hope our people would be circumspect in accepting bills, especially the P500 and P1,000 bank notes,” Police Colonel Martin Defensor Jr., said.

With Christmas season just a month away, he cited the importance of community partnership to thwart criminalities particularly fraudelent acts and crimes against property (theft and robbery).

“Be extra careful of the paper bill. Check for the authenticity of the banknotes as recommended by the Bangko Sentra ng Pilipinas (BSP),” Defensor said.

If someone happens to come across or possess fake bills, they must immediately report it to the nearest police station or the BSP.

Edmond dela Torre was arrested after he purchased cigarettes and liquor from a store in Uswag Subdivision in Barangay San Isidro, Jaro, Iloilo City using a counterfeit P500 Bill.

Ronel Arroyo said the suspect has purchased twice from his store using the fake P500 bills.

Arroyo learned of the incident after an inventory of their sales.

54 more P500 counterfeit bills were seized from dela Torre after his arrest.

Barangay Captain Felix Dureza of San Isidro village lager turned over 38 pieces of fake P500 bills which were taken from several residents in the area.

On the other hand, a fake P500 bill was allegedly used by a grade schooler in buying from a store.

Police Captain Eduardo Siacon, Jaro police chief, said out of the P100,000 worth of fake P500 bills, they recovered P47,500.

Dela Torre claimed that a supplier from Cubao, Quezon City gave him the fake money.

The suspect lived with his elder sister in Metro Manila where he allegedly met a person selling counterfeit bills.

Dela Torre said he saved up P10,000 to buy the P100,000 worth of counterfeit bills.

Siacon said criminal charges for estafa and violation of Article 167 of the Revised Penal Code, which criminalizes counterfeiting and knowingly placing forged banknotes in circulation.



The BSP recently issued an advisory on how to distinguish real money from fake bills

First is to touch the bill. By running your fingers through it, one would notice that real money has somewhat fought ridges since is it made of cotton and abaca. Fake money is made of smooth paper.

Second, one should be look for the watermark since “the blank white area on the front part of all Philippine bills have watermark that match the image on the left.”

The watermark becomes more visible by placing the money against the light and tilting it a bit.

Third, the security threads are also an indication of authenticity as Philippine notes have embedded security thread.

For 20 and 50 peso bills, the security thread is around 2 millimeters (mm) wide, while the 100, 200, 500, and 1000-peso bills are 4mm wide.

The public is also advised to look for the OVD (Optically Variable Device) patches for 500 and 1,000 bills.

The BSP said the 500 and the 1000 peso bills have reflective round patches on the left front side of the note.

Real money bills have serial numbers with two prefix letters and six to seven-digit numbers in increasing sizes. They also have embedded red and blue fibers that can be seen under UV light and the ancient Baybayin” word can be seen completely when money is placed against the light.

A real bill also has concealed denominational value on the upper left side of the portrait that can be seen when money is slightly rotated and tilted downwards; the security threads of larger denominations have the denomination and the initials of BSP repeatedly in small prints; and the back of these threads also have repeated micro-prints of BSP initials.

It is also important to check the bills authenticity while the source is present so that one could easily voice out his or her concern in case of doubts.