Police, feds looking for victims of "Black Money" scam - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Police, feds looking for victims of "Black Money" scam

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville authorities and the Secret Service say they've encountered a major scam in Kentucky for the first time.  They're now trying to find people who are victims.

It's called the "Black Money" scam, and a burglary call on Thanksgiving led authorities to fake money.

In a joint press conference, authorities told the media that the money was discovered at a home in southwest Jefferson County.  Victims are told the money is African Federal Reserve Notes that were produced by the Treasury Department during WWII, and were later abandoned after the war.

They convince people to pay for the chemicals to clean the money, and tell them they'll make quick cash.

Secret Service Agent Paul Johnson explains, "The suspects will use genuine currency. They cover it in black ink -- kind of a black iodine. They come up with...a substance that they will show a victim - 'Hey, we can actually clean this imported money and turn it into real money.'"

That's how they get people to pay up -- but the money authorities discovered wasn't real.  With this scam, people pay, and then the money turns out to be cardboard or construction paper that was dyed black.

Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad says this is something LMPD hasn't come across before.  The Secret Service says this is also a first, it seems, for Kentucky when it comes to this kind of scam.

They say there are two people of Liberian decent and one Cuban man they consider suspects, but they need help from victims.

This could lead to a much bigger case that expands to other states.

If you have any information, or if you are a victim, you are encouraged to call the LMPD anonymous tip line at 574-LMPD.

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