LONGVIEW,TX (KLTV)- They're organized, they're devious, and they've already made off with thousands of dollars from East Texas banks.
Banks in Titus, Cass, and Camp Counties say that over the past month, they've fallen victim to a group of counterfeiters. Bank surveillance images show several men and women coming to First National Bank in Hughes Springs the week of November 7th, apparently cashing paychecks.
"They're well organized they have their act together," Hughes Springs police chief Randy Kennedy said.
The checks were written from a well known area business, Farm Catch Catfish. The forgers knew it wouldn't look suspicious. Because it came from a trusted company , the bank had no reason to be suspicious. It was only afterwards they noticed the check numbers did not match the company's numbers.
"They went in and used identification which is either fraudulent or stolen," Kennedy said.
At least 11 people passed counterfeit checks at the First National Bank on a payday, when a lot of people were cashing and depositing. They got away with a total of $4,500.
"All the information on it is correct with the exception of the names of the people there , because they don't work there," Kennedy said.
It's estimated between $12,000 to $15,000 has been counterfeited through businesses in the three counties.
"They're very well organized. They did their homework. They knew which bank to go to," Kennedy said.
Investigators believe the group hits an area and then backs off, retools and then goes to another area.
"That's exactly what I think is going to happen, because they were successful here I don't believe they're going to come back," Kennedy said.
Anyone with any information on the counterfeiters is asked to call Hughes Springs police immediately.