Suspect in New York’s ATM counterfeit scams and theft arrested
New York, NY, United States (4E) – A 26-year-old man was taken in custody Monday on suspicion of stacking counterfeit bills to automated teller machines in Manhattan to conceal the theft of tens of thousands of dollars.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Jean Carlo Pena was arrested after arriving at the Kennedy International Airport on a flight from the Dominican Republic.
Pena works at the National Cash Register Corporation, a contractor servicing ATMs at the two Chase Bank branches where the incidents occurred.
The theft was discovered on October 8 when Chase bank customers on West 57th Street and Ninth Avenue found fake bills mixed with real currency after using the A.T.M.s to withdraw. The forged bills were made from ordinary paper and blank on one side.
Authorities believe that the thief assumed that the forgeries would keep the ATMs completely functioning just like when they are filled with the real currencies; but officials said that most machines still recognize counterfeits.
It was reported that the banks were short a total of around $110,000 due to the forgeries.
Pena is facing charges of possession of counterfeit currency and embezzlement by a bank employee.