POLICE are urging shopkeepers and residents to be on their guard after fake notes turned up in tills.
Peterlee CID is investigating reports of counterfeit £20 notes being passed at shops across east Durham.
Police have received five reports of the dodgy cash being handed over in Peterlee, Horden, Shotton Colliery and Wheatley Hill over the past week.
Detective Sergeant Stephen Thubron, of Peterlee CID, said: “We would urge shopkeepers to keep an eye out for these notes.
“There seems to be quite a few flooding in. The notes are quite a good copy but the paper doesn’t feel right. “Our advice is to be vigilant and to pass any information on forged notes on to us.”
Anyone with information about counterfeit cash is asked to call Det Sgt Thubron on 0345 6060365 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.