March 23, 2015

"Besides his templates for fake currency, Mr Peng the painter was also charged for forging graduation diplomas and other 'official' certificates."

Telegraph Nearly 97 per cent of counterfeit Chinese banknotes are forged from templates created by an elderly painter from southern China, state media reported. By Nicola Davison

'Peng Daxiang, who is 73 and a renowned artist in his hometown of Shantou, Guangdong province, is serving a life sentence following his arrest in 2013 in an operation against counterfeit.

'According to an analysis of fake banknotes seized in recent years by China's ministry of public security, 96.7 per cent of notes in circulation originated from templates drawn by Mr Peng.

'Mr Peng was so skilled an artist he created the fake 100 yuan (£10.80) templates without computer assistance. He profited by selling the templates for between 50,000 yuan and 120,000 yuan to counterfeiting gangs.

'Counterfeit money is increasingly a problem in China. The value of seized fake notes rose from 329 million yuan (£36 million) in 2012 to 532 million yuan (£57 million) in 2014.

'In one case in Guangdong province last year, authorities found that criminals could make counterfeit money worth 100 million yuan (£11 million) in one week if they worked around the clock.

'With advances in printer technology it has become easier to produce fake banknotes.

'"A factory making counterfeits is basically a small-sized printing workshop and they can easily get printing machines, ink and commercial-use paper from the market," said Liu Jintao, director of the anti-counterfeiting department of the Guangdong public security department.

'Forgers purchase paper and then stamp on a foil security line before printing the colours layer by layer. The finished note is pressed to give it a realistic, textured feel. A forged 100 yuan bank note is typically sold for six yuan.

'"Members of the syndicate gain huge profits, with their workers doing manual work paid at 10,000 yuan a day," Mr Liu told the South China Morning Post.

'The latest trend in counterfeiting is to forge lower-value notes, such as those supposedly worth 20 or 10 yuan, as the public are less likely to question their validity.'

No comments: