Türkiye seizes $1bn in fake dollars bound for Africa

Turkish security forces have seized $1bn in counterfeit currency and arrested six people at a storage unit in Istanbul's Kağithane district.

Among those arrested were one person from Ghana, three people from Sweden, a UK national and a Turkish citizen.

Istanbul’s İl Jandarma Komutanlığı took the suspects into custody at the storage unit, in an operation in which they found around 10m fake $100 notes in cargo boxes that were reportedly labelled for shipping to countries in Africa, according to the Turkish authorities, who say the seizure is the largest ever recorded in the country's history.

Villas rented by the suspects were searched by the authorities during the enforcement action on June 8, resulting in the seizure of their money and valuables including jewellery. Video of the operation appears in the twee below:

Organised crime groups around the world are turning to counterfeiting – of currency as well as other goods – as a relatively low-risk endeavour compared to the trade in narcotics and human trafficking.

It’s not the first time that a large amount of counterfeit dollars has been seized in Türkiye. In 2019, $271m in counterfeit US $100 banknotes were intercepted in a raid on an printing company in Istanbul's Esenyurt neighbourhood, leading to five arrests.

The US Federal Reserve introduced a new $100 note design in 2011 to try to stem counterfeiting, with new security features including a 3D security ribbon and a colour-shifting bell image.

The US government meanwhile says less than one hundredth of one percent of the value of all US currency in circulation is reported counterfeit, but acknowledges that the $100 note is the most widely circulated and most often counterfeited denomination overseas.

Related articles:

     Want our news sent directly to your inbox?

Yes please 2


Home  |  About us  |  Contact us  |  Advertise  |  Links  |  Partners  |  Privacy Policy  |   |  RSS feed   |  back to top