Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Customer Stuck With Counterfeit Money from the Post Office

Reporter David Lazarus writes in the Los Angeles Times, "A business inadvertently gives you counterfeit money — are you stuck with it? In most cases, yes. But what if that business happens to be a branch of the federal government?"

Lazarus goes on to say, "Los Angeles resident David Lipin found himself asking this question the other day after he cashed a $1,000 Postal Service money order at a West Hollywood post office."

According to the article that appeared in Tuesday's Business section, a postal clerk gave him 10 $20 bills and eight $100 bills. When he stopped at a nearby gas station to fill his tank, he tried to pay with one of his new $100 bills.

Lipin is quoted as saying, ""The clerk took a close look at it and said it was fake. Then she looked at some of the other $100 bills. She said they were fake too, and she called the police."

Alarmed, Lipin phoned a lawyer friend. At his friend's urging, he too called the Los Angeles Police Department to report that he'd been given bogus bills. "I wanted it very clear that I was a victim and not someone trying to pawn off some counterfeit dollars," Lipin said.

Lazarus asks, "Even though he got his bogus cash from the U.S. Postal Service redeeming a Postal Service money order, shouldn't Uncle Sam bear some responsibility?"

Wayne Williams, deputy special agent in charge of the Secret Service's L.A. office, said, "Not really. The post office operates as a business. It takes in money from customers. Postal workers don't really have special equipment or training to spot counterfeit bills. Unless they're in on it, this isn't their responsibility."

Shown above, David Lipin with phony $100 bills which were actually $5 bills that had been bleached and altered.

To read the entire article, click here.
Bookmark and Share
posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM