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More counterfeit euro coins discovered in 2012

February 12, 2013 in Coins, Counterfeit, Euro Coins

BRUSSELS | Mon Feb 11, 2013 (http://www.reuters.com)

(Reuters) – The euro’s reputation may have taken a hit during the three-year-long euro crisis but the European single currency remains popular with counterfeiters.

The number of counterfeit euro coins removed from circulation increased by 17 percent to 184,000 in 2012, with a face value of at least 290,000 euros, the European Commission said in a statement on Monday.

About 531,000 banknotes were taken out of circulation last year, according to the European Central Bank, which did not give a face value for the notes.

Around 80 percent of the fraudulent coins by value were 2-euro pieces while 20 and 50-euro notes are most commonly forged.

Last week, the Commission proposed increasing sanctions against counterfeiters by introducing a minimum six-month jail sentence in serious cases.

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