SINGAPORE: In a collaborative effort between the Riau Islands Regional Police (Polda Kepulauan Riau) and the Singaporean authorities, a counterfeit currency syndicate operating in Indonesia has been dismantled after attempting to exchange fake S$10,000 (US$7,500) bills at Marina Bay Sands Casino in Singapore.
The Singapore Police Force (SPF) in a Thursday (1 February) statement revealed that the case came to light on 21 September last year, when an Indonesian couple tried to exchange counterfeit S$10,000 bills for casino chips.
Upon discovering the fake currency, the casino authorities seized the bills and reported the incident to the Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) in Singapore for investigation.
Further inquiries uncovered that the couple had travelled from Batam to Singapore on the same day, receiving the counterfeit bills from business associates in Batam as payment for a transaction.
They intended to use the fake currency for gambling at the casino.
Despite no evidence suggesting the couple’s awareness of the counterfeit nature of the bills, the police, in consultation with the Attorney General’s Office, opted not to take further action against them.
The Indonesian authorities carried out three raids in the provinces of Riau and West Java between 15 and 20 November.
During these operations, three Indonesian men, Burhanuddin (39), Ahmad Yasin (46), and Ahmad (48), were arrested for their alleged involvement in counterfeiting and distributing currency.
A total of 390 S$10,000 bills, suspected to be counterfeit, were seized.
On 20 January, Indonesian police arrested Ciong (51) from Bogor in the Purworejo region of Central Java.
David Chew, Director of CAD, emphasized the importance of close collaboration with foreign law enforcement agencies, noting that the tight cooperation between SPF and the Indonesian Police led to the dismantling of the counterfeit currency syndicate based in Indonesia.
Authorities caution the public against the potential significant losses and erosion of trust caused by counterfeit currency, urging vigilance in verifying any uncommon currency in circulation as a legitimate means of payment.
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