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Alert 2006-57
Description: Lafayette Bank & Trust Company, N.A.

Counterfeit Official Checks of Lafayette Bank & Trust Company, Lafayette, IN

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 022000868 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a lottery scam.

Counterfeit items may be identified by the following traits: The checks are green in color and contain a darkened top border containing the following statement: “THIS DOCUMENT HAS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICROPRINTING. THE REVERSE SIDE INCLUDES AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK.” The words “OFFICIAL CHECK” are enclosed in a rectangular-shaped box and located in the top-center portion of the instrument. The checks are missing other security features as well as decorative borders, which are found on authentic items.

Checks presented to date have included serial numbers found within the series of 707113696 and 707118899, have been made payable in various amounts greater than $2,000, and include a forged signature of Lisa Vos.

Correspondence accompanying the checks may contain the letterhead of “Omega Lotto E-Payment Inc., P.O. Box 68112, St. Thomas, Virgin Island 00802.” Note that the address is misspelled as “Virgin Island” vs. “Virgin Islands.” The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of an unclaimed prize and should contact Mr. David Cohen at 1-902-412-8818 upon receipt of the notice. The recipient is informed to keep all information confidential and is encouraged to act by a specific date or the winnings will be forfeited. The correspondence is signed by Ronald Winston, Director Claim Management. Consumers who have called the telephone number were instructed to wire money to Canada in order to pay processing fees and international taxes. The volume of these counterfeit items has increased and the variation of their appearance has become constant. Bank officials, therefore, should verify any suspicious checks directly with Alliance Bank, N.A.

For additional information and guidance and to verify the authenticity of Alliance Bank, N.A.’s official checks, please contact Shari Gordon, Security Officer, 120 Madison Street, Syracuse, NY 13202, by telephone at (315) 475-4753, by fax at (315) 475-0870, or via e-mail at [sgordon@alliancebankna.com].

For additional information and guidance and to verify the authenticity of Lafayette Bank & Trust Company, N.A.’s official checks, please contact Renee D. Reed, V.P./Security Officer, PO Box 1130, Lafayette, IN 47902-1130, by telephone at (765) 423-7202, by fax at (765) 423-7198, or via e-mail at [reedr@lbtonline.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/

Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance