Law enforcement officers are investigating the theft of $20,000
worth of new colorized Series 2009 $100 Federal Reserve notes.
The redesigned notes were shipped aboard a commercial airliner
from Dallas to Philadelphia on Oct. 11. The airliner landed at the
Philadelphia International Airport at approximately 10:25 a.m.,
according to a news release from the Federal Bureau of Investigation
office in Philadelphia.
According to FBI Special Agent Frank Burton Jr., the shipment of
notes was taken from the airport by courier service to the East
Rutherford Operations Center in East Rutherford, N.J. When the
shipment arrived in New Jersey, courier service employees noticed one
of the packages had been opened. The theft was reported at
approximately 2:00 p.m., Burton said.
The New Jersey facility is the regional office for cash handling
and processing for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
According to an FBI news release, the Series 2009 $100 FRNs “are
not scheduled to be released into circulation until next year. All
merchants are asked to please be on the lookout for these bills.”
Special Agent Burton said the FBI continues to follow all leads
and all potential subjects are being investigated. Anyone with
information is asked to call the FBI office in Philadelphia at 215-418-4000.
Federal Reserve officials have yet to announce an issue date for
the new $100 FRNs, but have said that at least six months will pass
between the announcement of an issue date and the day of issue.
The colorized Series 2009 $100 FRNs were originally scheduled to
be released into circulation on Feb. 10, 2011. However, on Oct. 1,
2010, the Federal Reserve said the release would be delayed because
the BEP had “identified a problem with sporadic creasing of the paper
during printing of the new $100 note, which was not apparent during
extensive pre-production testing.”
According to officials, the new $100 FRNs are more difficult to
print than the older versions because a new ribbon added as a security
device creates a small wave in what would otherwise be flat paper. The
blue 3-D security ribbon contains images of bells and numeral 100s
that move and change from one to the other as the note is tilted. The
ribbon is an optically variable device named Motion. The ribbon
contains 650,000 tiny glass domes, called micro lenses. According to
the BEP, these micro lenses act as magnifiers for the microprinted
images on the ribbon. ■