Man Jailed After Trying To Pass £1200 In False Notes

A man who tried to buy a mobile phone from a Merry Hill store using counterfeit notes has been locked up for three years.

Patrick McCarthy was working with an accomplice and together they tried to spend £1,280 using forged notes in the centre's Vodafone shop, Wolverhampton Crown Court was told.

But the 23-year-old traveller was rumbled when staff became suspicious and he was detained until police arrived. Recorder Mark Rhind told McCarthy: 

"These are extremely serious offences that harm the economy and the country."

He said McCarthy, of no fixed address, had already built up a criminal record for inquisitive dishonesty and it was clear he was trying to clear a drug debt by passing the fake currency. 

McCarthy had used £1,000 of counterfeit notes at shops across the country. He had previously been arrested in the Daventry area when police were alerted about fake money being passed at shops and after being bailed he was again detained a month later in Worcester.

On the first occasion Howard Searle, prosecuting, told the court he had £220 worth notes of forged notes and after his second arrest he had £180 worth in his pocket.

McCarthy admitted three charges of tendering and possessing fake English and Scottish banknotes and also breaching two suspended prison sentences.

Rashad Mohammed, defending, said McCarthy was a member of the travelling community and at the time he was struggling to clear a drug debt.


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