Police are warning shopkeepers to be on the lookout for counterfeit $50 and $100 notes that are circulating around Hamilton.
The fake money has been used mostly at service stations, usually late at night and at times when there are lots of people around. The reproductions are good quality, but they feel slightly different to real money. Police believe there is a large amount of the money being used in the city.
The counterfeit money has been used to buy food, cigarettes and sunglasses at one service station and several $100 notes had been passed over the counter of a hardware store in recent weeks. Police found eight $100 bills in a wallet that was discarded by an alleged burglar who was being chased by police last week.
The notes had been detected when shops were cashing up or when they arrived at banks. Police are advising shopkeepers to look closely at any $50 or $100 notes they may be given and to notify police if they suspect they are forgeries.
All the notes have the serial number BH99649282.
It was also possible that some people may have innocently received them in change. Anyone with information about the fake money is urged to contact Hamilton police on 07 8586200.