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Alert 2007-27
Description: Community First National Bank of West Plains

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks of Community First National Bank of West Plains, West Plains, MO

To: Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks; All State Banking Authorities; Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; Director, Office of Thrift Supervision; Conference of State Bank Supervisors; Deputy Comptrollers (districts); Assistant Deputy Comptrollers; District Counsel; and All Examining Personnel

The above-named bank has reported that counterfeit cashier's checks issued in the bank's name and using a correct routing number of 086518765 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a variety of lottery scams.

While some of the counterfeit items are similar to the authentic items, others bear little resemblance and may be identified by the following: the counterfeit instruments may be blue in color, contain the words "CASHIER'S CHECK" across the top-center portion of the instrument in a large font, and include the bank's name and logo in the lower-left portion of the check with a crooked "1". The following security statement is contained within the top border of the instrument: "FOR SECURITY PURPOSES, THE FACE OF THIS DOCUMENT CONTAINS A COLORED Background AND MICROPRINTING IN THE BORDER."

Items presented to date have been made payable in varying amounts from $2,975.00 to $3,450.00, may be signed by "Kelly," contain serial numbers of 016745 or within the 0170** series, and may be dated between 05/03/2007 and 05/09/2007. Remitter names may appear as Angela Renay or Melissa Raney. Due to possible variations of appearance, it is suggested that officials of Community First National Bank of West Plains be contacted to verify authenticity of the bank's cashier's checks if received from an unknown or questionable source.

Thus far, there is a variety of correspondence accompanying the counterfeit checks. They have appeared as follows:

  • Correspondence contains the letterhead of "EPIC FINANCIAL, 9732 Rd Victoria BC V98 6GI." The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of an unclaimed prize and instructs the recipient to contact Mr. John Landis at (403) 400-1875 (a Canadian telephone number), ext. 1 within five working days to obtain a tax identification number, which is required to release the funds. The letter may be signed by David Stevens, General Manager.

  • Correspondence contains the letterhead of "AMAZONE UNIVERSAL GAMING (Lotto, Publishers Clearing House, Readers Digest, Sweepstakes & Internet Casino), 1450 Cooper Street, Ottawa, ONT K2P 2N1." The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of an unclaimed prize and instructs the recipient to contact the claims agent at (613) 255-6362 (a Canadian telephone number). The letter further states that the enclosed check is to be used to pay for accounting, tax processing, and clearance fees prior to the prize being paid out. This letter may be signed by Mr. Eric Jones, Director of Promotions.

  • Correspondence contains the letterhead of "Diamond Jewel Sweepstakes (Publisher's Clearing House, Reader's Digest, Online Casino, Online Sweepstakes), 2749 Laurier Blvd, Ottawa, ON K5M 3H9." The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of an unclaimed prize and instructs the recipient to contact the claims agent at (613) 262-2418 (a Canadian telephone number). The letter further states that the enclosed check is to be used to pay for processing and clearance fees prior to the prize being paid out.

For additional information and guidance and to verify the authenticity of Community First National Bank of West Plains' cashier's checks, please contact Ron Thompson, Security Officer, 1330 Southern Hills Center, PO Box 678, West Plains, MO 65775, by telephone at (417) 255-2265, by fax at (417) 255-2266, or via e-mail at [ron@com1nb.com].

Consumers who receive a counterfeit or fictitious item and associated material should file complaints with the following agencies, as appropriate:

  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at 1-877-FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC's Web site at www.ftc.gov.

  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police (Canadian scams): by telephone at 1-888-495-8501 or via e-mail at [info@phonebusters.com]. Their Web site, www.phonebusters.com, provides additional contact numbers.

  • Better Business Bureau (BBB) – The BBB system serves markets throughout Canada, Puerto Rico, and the United States, and is the marketplace leader in advancing trust between businesses and consumers. The international Web site www.bbb.org offers contact information for local BBBs, objective reports on more than two million businesses, consumer scam alerts, and tips on a wide variety of topics that help consumers find trustworthy businesses and make wise purchasing decisions.

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Internet Fraud Complaint Center (scams that may have originated via the Internet) at www.ic3.gov.

  • If correspondence is received via the U.S. Postal Service, contact the U.S. Postal Inspector Service by telephone at 1-888-877-7644, by mail at U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Office of Inspector General, Operations Support Group, 222 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 1250, Chicago, IL 60606-6100, or via e-mail at http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/forms/MailFraudComplaint.aspx.

Additional information concerning this matter that you believe should be brought to the attention of the OCC may be forwarded to:

E-mail: occalertresponses@occ.treas.gov
Mail: Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Special Supervision Division, MS 6-4
250 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20219
Fax: (202) 874-5214
Internet: http://www.occ.gov

For additional information regarding other types of financial fraud, please visit the OCC's anti-fraud resource at: http://www.occ.gov/topics/consumer-protection/fraud-resources/index-fraud-resources.html.

/signed/

Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance

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