EL PASO - A collective $7,904.44 in losses was absorbed by vendors that cashed fraudulent checks said to be from the Sheriff's Office. A total of 19 checks were duplicated from the Sheriff's Office Detention Facility Inmate Trust Funds Account.
The duplicates came from original checks issued to released inmates for the balance of their commissary account.
Cases of fake, duplicated checks began trickling into the Sheriff's Office Bond and Inmate Trust Section (BITS) on Jan. 25. The Inter National Bank reported that checks from the Sheriff's Inmate Trust Fund were being rejected by the bank's security system. Although BITS's internal security systems prevented the checks from being paid out of the Sheriff’s Inmate Trust Fund, the third party vendors who cashed the checks will have to take the loss.
In order to help prevent check fraud, businesses and the public can call (915) 546-2249 to verify checks. It is recommended a 10 business day hold be placed on these checks to ensure the check clears.