With Christmas shopping in full swing, area merchants are advised to make sure things are really as they seem.
 
There has been a rash recently of people passing counterfeit American bills.
 
"That business that had some money passed, she didn't work alone, there were two young women who went in there and passed some bills," explained Constable Craig Nelson of the Drumheller RCMP. "One has already been dealt with through the courts, already charged and convicted and in jail; the other one we're still just working on that."
 
The arrested woman is identified as 21 year old Reanne Broderson of Red Deer. She was sentenced to six months. Arrest warrants have also been issued for 20 year old Sara Alderson and 35 year old Jeffrey Morse.
 
"I'm from the Jasper area, which is a very touristy town, and we see a lot of counterfeit American money coming through," he continued. "American money is a little easier, I think, to counterfeit just because it's still sort of that paper style money, whereas the Canadian bills are super secure and I think that's why we're seeing these American bills coming through."
 
There have been a number of police alerts to the media in Alberta about counterfeit money this year and Cst. Nelson says all business owners can do is be vigilent.
 
"If you're getting an American bill, we don't see them often in Drumheller, when you get them have a good look," he advised. "I know there are some pens that can be used on those bills to confirm that they're good and it's worth doing some research and checking out some of the techniques to check to make sure those bills are good bills."
 
If you're not sure if a bill is good or not, Nelson recommends you take it to your bank. If you think you've been defrauded, call police at 403-823-2630. If you want to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

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