Pennsylvania Casino Continues to See Funny Money, Secret Service Investigating

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Pennsylvania Casino Continues to See Funny Money, Secret Service Investigating

Three phony $100 bills have surfaced at Pennsylvania’s Valley Forge Casino Resort in the past month. The fake money was forwarded to the US Secret Service.

New $100 bills at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing's Western Currency Facility in Texas
New $100 bills at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing's Western Currency Facility in Texas
New $100 bills at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing’s Western Currency Facility in Texas, pictured above. Fake $100 bills were found at a Pennsylvania casino. (Image: AP)

In the most recent incident, the bill was located at the casino on July 7. It was handed over by a 57-year-old Red Hill, Pa. man.

Earlier, on June 27, a 63-year-old Bensalem, Pa. man presented two counterfeit $100 bills at the same gaming property. Both men were victims and are not going to be investigated for passing fake currency, the Sanatoga Post, a state news service, reported.

In March, a fake $100 bill also was discovered at Valley Forge Casino Resort. That bill was sent to the Secret Service for inspection, too. State troopers revealed the bill lacked “security features,” the Post said. These should have been embedded in the bill, the report explained.

Earlier Counterfeit Operation

In December 2020, four Philadelphia residents were charged for allegedly passing $16,000 in counterfeit bills at casinos in Pennsylvania and New Jersey during April 2019. These include 20 counterfeit $100 bills passed at Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack in Chester.

Those arrested include Mahagany White, 33, Marcus Davis, 44, Nieem Johnson, 37, and Kiara Kristin Purnell, 31. Each was charged with forgery, theft by deception, possessing instruments of crime, and conspiracy, according to the Delaware County Daily Times, a regional newspaper. It was not immediately clear what happened to these charges in local court.

It was alleged the defendants circulated fake bills at SugarHouse Casino — now known as Rivers Casino Philadelphia — in April 2019. There were 18 fake $100 bills. Each had the same serial number. White and Purnell allegedly passed the fake bills at two Spanish21 Blackjack tables.

Johnson also allegedly passed 25 fake bills at two Parx Casino tables, and 20 phony bills at two Harrah’s tables that same month. Johnson also allegedly passed another 20 fake $100 bills at Valley Forge Casino. And then, Johnson and Davis allegedly passed another 77 fake $100 bills at Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem — now called Wind Creek Bethlehem.

That same month, Johnson allegedly attempted to pass fake bills at Hard Rock Cafe Casino in Atlantic City, N.J. But a dealer contacted a gaming floor supervisor. Casino security guards were notified.

In a similar incident, during April a suspected counterfeiting operation was found in a guest room at the Extended Stay America Hotel in Philadelphia. Police claim the printing scheme made $1 bills look like $100 bills. They were bleached and then altered through a printing process. Each of the bills had the same serial number.

Prison Time

Forging currency often results in prison time.

For instance, in June Savannah Symone Duncan, 24, of Los Angeles, was sentenced to two years in prison, the Fort Myers News-Press, a local newspaper, reported.

She allegedly presented $2,640 in counterfeit $20 bills in Fort Myers in 2021. She pleaded guilty last November to passing or uttering counterfeit US currency.

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