Tags: North | Korean | Counterfeit | Operation | Suspected

North Korean Counterfeit Operation Suspected

Monday, 11 June 2007 12:00 AM

NEW YORK -- Diplomatic sources tell NewsMax that the government of North Korea may be involved in a U.S. currency counterfeiting operation far more extensive than previously thought.

For more than a year, the U.S. Treasury Department has sought to "isolate" and interdict millions of counterfeit dollars in $100 denominations believed to have originated in North Korea.

According to Treasury sources, the quality of the so-called "North Korean super C-notes" was of exceptional quality, and the fraud was difficult for many banks to detect.

Some of the North Korean "super C's" are believed to have reached as far as New York City.

How Pyongyang managed to circulate the currency has been a subject of a coordinated investigation by both the U.S. and South Korean governments.

Sources with knowledge of the investigation tell NewsMax that North Korea used aid agencies and diplomatic missions as a prime way to move and launder money.

In one case, it is alleged that Pyongyang stole from various international aid agencies, such as the U.N. Development Program.

The U.N. would electronically transfer money to North Korean banks to pay local personnel.

The money given to those locals is suspected to have been counterfeit.

But, it is now believed that North Korea went a step further.

It is alleged that the North Koreans pulled the same "switcheroo" with numerous embassies in their capital city, Pyongyang.

It is suspected that when diplomats went to local banks to withdraw funds deposited by their governments, they unknowingly received North Korean "phony" greenbacks.

That money would then be carried overseas and enter worldwide circulation.

It also is difficult to trace.

"It is the perfect scam," explained a source familiar with the operation.

"Who would suspect foreign diplomats of circulating North Korean super C-notes?" he asked.

Even if they (the diplomats) were caught, they likely have diplomatic immunity, the source pointed out.

Among the embassies believed to have been "scammed" by the North Koreans are China, Russia and Switzerland.

While no firm figure has been released, it is believed the North Korean operation may have circulated between $50 million and $100 million in counterfeit U.S. currency.

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NEW YORK -- Diplomatic sources tell NewsMax that the government of North Korea may be involved in a U.S. currency counterfeiting operation far more extensive than previously thought. For more than a year, the U.S. Treasury Department has sought to "isolate"...
North,Korean,Counterfeit,Operation,Suspected
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2007-00-11
Monday, 11 June 2007 12:00 AM
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