POLICE are hunting a fraudster who has repeatedly tried to use fake notes in shops and pubs in Warrington.

Detectives have issued a warning to shoppers and traders to be vigilant following multiple reports about fraudulent notes.

CCTV enquiries are ongoing to establish the identity of the man involved.

A spokesman for the Bank of England, who has released details on how to spot counterfeit currency, said: “Counterfeiting directly funds organised crime.

“It hurts the UK economy by creating losses for businesses, which ultimately affects the cost of things that we buy. It also affects the pocket of anyone who receives a counterfeit note, as they are worthless.

“If you report counterfeiting to the police, you are helping with investigations and alerting them to a problem in their area. This means that they can take action to protect your community.”

While counterfeit banknotes are rare, anyone dealing in cash is reminded to be vigilant at all times.

To help, we have collected some top tips from the Bank of England to help detect counterfeit currency. More here. 

What features should I check?

You should check a few features which are specific to each denomination, for example focussing on the see-through window on the polymer £5 and £10 notes, the holographic strip and watermark on the £20 note and the green motion thread and watermark on the £50 note. More here.

How do I check the size of the note?

Banknotes get slightly larger as they increase in value, so a £10 note is bigger than a £5 note and so on.

What should I do if I think I have a counterfeit note?

Counterfeit notes are worthless. It is a criminal offence to knowingly hold onto or pass on counterfeit notes. If you suspect a note is counterfeit, take it to the police as soon as possible.