Police are warning people in the Leeds area to be on their guard against forged Scottish bank notes which are being used in the city.
West Yorkshire Police says that over the last few weeks it has had several reports of counterfeit £20 notes being used at various local businesses.
These include incidents where the notes have been used in the purchase of second-hand cars and also for smaller items in shops and restaurants and on some occasions businesses have been asked to change the notes for English ones.
Sgt Fiona Van Kampen, of Leeds District Contact Management Unit, said: “Although the use of counterfeit currency is thankfully still relatively rare, we have recently had a number of reports of fake Scottish banknotes being used in Leeds which suggests there has been an increase.
“While we don’t want people to be unduly alarmed, we would like businesses particularly to be vigilant and take all the normal precautions to check that any notes used for transactions are genuine.
“They should check more than one of the relevant security features, including the feel of the paper, the watermark, raised print, and any move/tilt hologram.
“It is a criminal offence to hold or pass a banknote knowing it to be counterfeit and any business who encounters one should not return it to the person and should contact the police. We would ask they note a description of the passer and any vehicle details to assist with our enquiries.”