German woman caught attempting to purchase car with home-printed money

A German woman attempted to buy a vehicle from a car dealership in the southwestern city of Kaiserslautern Friday using counterfeit currency she printed off at home.

She carried a wad of €15,000 ($16,830) to the dealership in Kaiserslautern, only for her plan to backfire as she left the location in handcuffs and riding in the back of a police car.

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Exposing the woman’s plan did not require keen investigative skills, after she opted to print the bogus 50 and 100-euro notes via a regular ink jet printer, according to German news outlet DW News.

When police searched the 20-year-old woman’s home in the nearby city of Pirmasens, 21 miles south of Kaiserslautern, they found the printer loaded with freshly printed “money” along with €13,000 worth of mock euros.

A watermark in a Durasafe bill helps prevent counterfeiting.

A watermark in a Durasafe bill helps prevent counterfeiting. (Durasafe)

Germany’s Federal Criminal Police (BKA) states that “imitating money with the intention of putting it on the market” is punishable by at least one year behind bars. However, the state prosecutor has yet to determine criminal charges against the woman.

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The BKA said that although professional forgers use highly sophisticated technology to print currency, amateurs can easily access counterfeiting equipment online and require “no special knowledge”. They add that the 50-euro note is the most counterfeited.

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In Germany’s most recent report on counterfeit currencies, 54,000 counterfeit cases were reported in 2018 with 99,900 banknotes totaling to more than €17 million pulled from circulation.

Fox News' Morgan Cheung contributed to this report.