Counterfeiter Sentenced in Anchorage Court

$20 currency speciman. Image-U.S. Secret Service
$20 currency speciman. Image-U.S. Secret Service

It was announced on Wednesday that convicted counterfeiter, Eugene David Downey was sentenced in United States District Court to 30 months in prison for his counterfeiting spree that spanned May 2013 until his arrest in April, 2014.

According to court documents, Downey was arrested on state counterfeiting charges and convicted in May of 2013. But, Downey would continue his counterfeiting efforts after his conviction and would pass fake bills at least 200 times in the ensuing 11 months.

Some of the Anchorage establishments that Downey passed his bogus bills included the Sports Authority, Kohls, AMH, and REI. Downey would go to these stores and others, buy merchandise with his fake money, then return to the store later and return the items and be paid in genuine currency.

Downey’s criminal operation only came to a halt when an REI employee recognized Downey from previous attempts to pass bogus bills. That employee called 911 and an Anchorage officer responded to the scene. Downey resisted arrest and backup officers sped to the scene. Downey continued to resist arrest but was finally place in  a patrol car and transported to the Anchorage Jail.

When apprehended, Downey had a wallet filled with counterfeit bills.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin Feldis stated, “counterfeiting is a persistent problem
throughout this country and throughout the world. We are not immune to that problem in Alaska, and
small amounts of counterfeit bills are routinely found here. All businesses should be aware of how to spot
counterfeit bills, and report the receipt of fake bills to the police or U.S. Secret Service. The conviction of
Eugene Downey shows that knowingly passing counterfeit bills is a significant crime with serious
penalties. While making counterfeit $5, $10 and $20 bills with a laser printer or photocopier, or passing
fake bills under the guise that you did not know they were fake, may seem like tempting crimes, fake bills
are not hard to spot and those involved with these crimes will be aggressively pursued.”

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Judge Gleason noted the detrimental impact to local businesses from Downey’s manufacturing
and passing of counterfeit money as well as the assault on the officer as reasons for imposing the 30-
month sentence.