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Man, 32, Arrested For Alleged Counterfeit Bills

CANOGA PARK (CBS) — A man suspected of passing more than $300,000 in counterfeit $100 bills was arrested thanks to a multi-agency law enforcement effort.

32-year-old Paul Hernandez, known to insiders as "Operation Bear Trap," was arrested July 20 outside a Bass Pro Shop in Rancho Cucamonga after a six-month investigation.

The Los Angeles Police Department's Topanga Organized Retail Crimes Unit along with the Secret Service worked the investigation, which started in the Topanga area and led them east into the Big Bear Lake area.

San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies helped serve a search warrant at Hernandez's home in Big Bear, where agents found equipment to create authentic looking $100 bills.

Rancho Cucamonga police helped arrest Hernandez at the sporting goods store, while several local retail stores in the San Fernando Valley helped authorities locate the suspect.

The case against Hernandez will be filed in the Superior Court in San Bernardino County.

He's expected to be arraigned on felony charges July 24 in Rancho Cucamonga.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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