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Alert 2006-28
Description: Citizens National Bank

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks Drawn on Citizens National Bank, Bluffton, OH

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 041212983 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a lottery scam.

The counterfeit checks contain a fictitious logo in the top-center portion of the check. This logo contains the letters “CNB” enclosed in a darkened box followed by the bank name of “CITIZENS NATIONAL BANK” in a ribbon. The words “DOWNTOWN” and “UPTOWN” appear on either side of this logo. The word “PURCHASER” is located in the upper-left corner of the check, and the statement “THIS DOCUMENT CONTANS SECURITY FEATURES – SEE REVERSE” is contained within the top border of the check. A “Notice to Customers” is located in the center portion of the instrument, and a “Payable Through BB&T, Charleston, WV” clause is printed in the lower-left corner. The words “CASHIER’S CHECK” are printed in the lower-center section of the check followed by a gold seal. Neither the account number nor the numbering scheme on the counterfeit items are correct.

These checks are mailed to potential victims accompanied by a letter from “Emerging Financial Group, 2045 South Pearls Street, Suite 400, Tacoma, WA 98411,” which are signed by Norman Thomas and postmarked from Canada. The letters notify the recipient that they have won a prize from “USA Mega Millions Jackpot” and instruct the potential victim to contact one of the agents immediately. The names Jason Turner and David Wesley are listed as agents, with (778) 855-0690 as a contact number.

Currently, Citizens National Bank has three different styles of authentic cashier’s checks in circulation. All would have a perforation on the left side of the instrument, and all contain the same logo in the center of the check followed by the city, state, and zip code of the issuing office as well as the bank’s Web site address of <www.cnbohio.com>.

The following city, state, and zip codes are legitimate:

  • Bluffton, Ohio 45817
  • Elida, Ohio 45807
  • Lima, Ohio 45802
  • Van Wert, Ohio 45891
  • Celina, Ohio 45822
  • Findlay, Ohio 45840

All checks contain italicized text under the legal line detailing the type of security features contained on the instruments, and all checks contain silver foil somewhere on the face of the document. Locations of the silver foil vary, but can include the words “Original Financial Instrument,” “Original Document,” or simply a line printed down the left side of the check.

For additional information and guidance or to verify the authenticity of Citizens National Bank’s cashier’s checks, please contact Andy Foust, Assistant Vice President of Branch Operations, Citizens National Bank, 102 S. Main Street, PO Box 88, Bluffton, OH 45817, by telephone at (419) 224-9495, ext 434; by fax at (419) 369-4296; or via e-mail at [andyf@cnbohio.com].

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