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Alert 2008-46
Description: Hilltop National Bank

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks of Hilltop National Bank, Casper, WY

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; 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 either a correct routing number of 102301199 or the routing number of 112203122, which is associated with Valley Bank of Commerce in Roswell, NM, are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a lottery scam.

The counterfeit checks do not resemble the authentic items and may be identified by the following: the instruments are olive green in color, contain the bank’s name, address, and a lamppost logo in the upper-left portion of the item. The words “CASHIER’S CHECK” are located in the top-center portion of the check, with the date and check number appearing directly beneath. The following security statement appears in the top border: “THIS DOCUMENT HAS AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK ON BACK. HOLD AT ANGLE TO VIEW.” The words “Authorized Signature” appear below the signature line in the bottom-right corner of the instrument.

Items presented to date have been made payable in the amount of $1,870.88.

The award claim notification correspondence accompanying the checks may contain the letterhead of “Marrel Management Payment Systems, 922 Third Ave., Kamloops, BC V2C6W5, Direct Telephone: 1 (647) 219-7710.” The recipient is informed of his or her winning status of a large dollar amount in the sweepstakes drawing and is instructed to keep his or her winning status confidential. The recipient is informed that the enclosed check will be used to pay applicable taxes on the winnings and is further instructed to contact claim agent Mrs. Kathy Walker at 1-647-219-7710 for further clarification and instructions. The letter may be signed by David Baker, Promotions Manager.

Due to possible variations in the appearance of the bank’s official items and differing scams associated with the counterfeit or fictitious items, officials of Hilltop National Bank recommend that any recipient who receives any of the bank’s official items from an unknown or questionable source should contact the bank to verify the item’s authenticity.

For additional information and guidance, please contact the Customer Accounting Department, Hilltop National Bank at 300 Country Club Road, Casper, WY 82609 or by telephone at (307) 265-2740.

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 and a link to their online reporting system, RECOL, which can be accessed at www.recol.ca.

  • 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 http://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 http://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 https://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/

Daniel P. Stipano
Deputy Chief Counsel