VALE — Despite a quiet Fourth of July holiday overall, Malheur County Sheriff Brian Wolfe said there were about three or four counterfeit $20 bills circulated at businesses in Vale on Friday.

Officials believe the bills were not generated locally, but rather by someone traveling through the area, as the incidents all happened on one day, “and then they were gone.”

Anyone looking closely at wording on the bills would have had an indication that they weren’t real, as “these particular ones included the words ‘for motion picture movies.’”

In addition to looking at wording on bills, Wolfe encouraged people to more closely inspect bills that are “really light in color and look like they’ve been through a washing machine,” as they will likely be fictitious.

In addition, there are local businesses which carry special pens to mark the bills and indicate whether they are legitimate.

Those pens are available at various retailers, including Malheur Drug in Vale, the sheriff said, where people working at Vale’s 4th of July Rodeo last week purchased them for money taken in at the gate.

Although an official with the drug store this morning said they are currently out of stock of the pens and are looking to order more.

Even though it is expected the person(s) passing the bills are no longer in the area, the sheriff said he wants citizens to be aware of how easily fake money can be passed.

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