Organized crime found behind fake banknotes


THE Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) announced last Monday that seven enforcement operations it ran in the first nine months of the year led to the seizure of more than 500 pieces of counterfeit Philippine banknotes worth more than P480,000.

The enforcement operations also resulted in the arrest of 16 suspects, 14 of which were members of crime syndicates, according to the BSP.

In addition to the seized counterfeit Philippine currency, the BSP also seized more than 200 pieces of counterfeit foreign banknotes during the said period.

The BSP’s Payments and Currency Investigation Group, which carries out operations against counterfeiters, has already filed criminal cases against the arrested individuals in the courts.

Under Republic Act 10951, counterfeiters of Philippine currency are subject to the penalty of imprisonment of at least 12 years and 1 day and a fine not exceeding P2million.

Over the last decade, the BSP has conducted more than a hundred enforcement operations that led to the apprehension of 176 suspects and the confiscation of more than 12,000 pieces of counterfeit Philippine banknotes worth P7.69 million.

The BSP has also seized more than 14,300 pieces of counterfeit US dollar bills worth $92.59 million, along with a number of other foreign currencies.

Earlier this year, the BSP urged the public to regularly and carefully check the features of their Philippine banknotes to ensure their authenticity. This is in response to reports circulating in messaging apps and social media platforms on the existence of alleged counterfeit 1,000-peso banknotes.

“The BSP encourages the public to immediately report any information on counterfeiting of Philippine currency to the nearest police station or law enforcement agency for appropriate action,” the BSP said in its statement.

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