Man busted with billion dollar bills

By | March 14, 2006

Man busted with billion dollar bills

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The counterfeit money looked good, but there was one flaw. There’s no such thing as a one billion dollar bill. U.S. Customs agents in California said on Tuesday they had found 250 bogus billion dollar bills while investigating a man charged with currency smuggling.

Tekle Zigetta, 45, pleaded guilty to three federal counts of trying to bring cash, phoney bills and a fake $100,000 (57,000 pound) gold certificate into the United States in January. Further investigation led agents to a West Hollywood apartment where they found the stash of yellowing and wrinkled one billion dollar bills with an issue date of 1934 and bearing a picture of President Grover Cleveland.

“You would think the $1 billion denomination would be a giveaway that these notes are fake, but some people are still taken in,” said James Todak, a secret services agent involved in the probe. – REUTERS

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