Fake notes from Guangdong, not Taiwan, provincial police say

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 06 August, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 06 August, 2009, 12:00am

Guangdong police have confirmed that 90 per cent of fake bank notes in circulation on the mainland - including two high-quality strains of 100-yuan notes originate in the province.

Mainland media reported early this year that counterfeit notes with serial numbers beginning HD90 and HB90 had originated in Taiwan, something denied by the island's authorities after an investigation.

Qian Bo, deputy director of the Guangdong Public Security Bureau's economic crimes department, confirmed the notes 'were certainly not from Taiwan, but printed in eastern Guangdong', The Southern Metropolis News reported yesterday.

Mr Qian described eastern parts of the province as an epicentre of the counterfeiting industry. 'The Ministry of Public Security said Guangdong is the main battlefield in stamping out currency counterfeiting and obviously most fake banknotes are originally from Guangdong,' he was quoted as saying.

According to provincial police, the counterfeiting industry was centred around Shantou, Lufeng and Jieyang. Some notes were also printed in neighbouring Jiangxi province.

Sales networks were mainly controlled by a small group of people from Lufeng and Jieyang, while Shantou's Chaonan district was where many of the notes were printed. Chaonan, home to paper and printing industries, was also named as the source of many fake receipts.

Guangdong police said Taiwan had been the main source of fake notes before the 1990s, but after a crackdown on smuggling, production shifted to Guangdong.

More than 50 people have been sentenced to death for counterfeiting in the past two decades after a series of campaigns. Police said two peasants from Jieyang and Shantou had been executed last month for making notes with a face value of 100 million yuan.

Provincial police announced early last month that they had launched a six-month crackdown, mainly targeting the three eastern cities as well as Guangzhou's Baiyun district. Police said that Guangzhou and Shenzhen had become the distribution hubs for fake notes because of ease of transport and mature logistics systems.

Mr Qian told the newspaper the new campaign would focus on producers of the fake notes and people who frequently used them.

He said people would be detained for intentionally introducing the notes into circulation and sent to labour camps or charged with fraud if they were caught more than three times.

The Ministry of Public Security launched a national campaign to stamp out currency counterfeiting in January. By early May, it said that police had seized fake notes with a face value of more than 310 million yuan and smashed 16 counterfeiting workshops nationwide.