Forgers up their euro output

Seizures of forged euro notes in Greece have peaked over the past two months, police said yesterday, adding that a total of 4,776 counterfeit notes have been discovered so far. Police criminal investigations chief Efstratios Kyriakakis told a seminar in Thessaloniki organized by the Public Order Ministry that some 50 percent of the confiscated notes were found in November and December, and an ever-increasing number of forgeries is expected to gradually hit the market. Counterfeiters tend to favor the 50-euro note, while all the forgeries are imported, mostly from Bulgaria. Kyriakakis added that devices used by shopkeepers to check whether banknotes are genuine can err on the side of caution, mostly in the case of worn or washed notes. Police, he said, would ask the Development Ministry to pass standard specifications for such devices. Over the weekend, police in northern Greece seized 125 forged 200-euro notes that had been paid into a Kavala bank account by two Greeks, who said they received the cash from a Bulgarian they did business with.

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