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Woman not charged for cashing fake checks from 'CIA head'

2012/05/04 17:30:15

Taipei, May 4 (CNA) No charges will be pressed against a woman who was caught cashing a fake travelers check she said was from her fiance, a man claiming to be the director of the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), prosecutors said in Taipei Friday.

According to the Taipei District Prosecutors Office, no evidence was found during its investigation to prove that the woman, surnamed Liu, knew the travelers check was fake when she tried cashing it at a local bank on Sep. 5, 2011.

Liu was charged with counterfeiting securities after the banknotified the police.

Liu said she received a package of 37 travelers checks totaling 18,500 euro (US$24,291) along with a sales receipt from her fiance last September, who claimed to be CIA head David Petraeus, prosecutors said.

Because the man, whom Liu met online in May 2011, had proposed to her and promised to come to Taiwan to marry her, the prosecutors said she thought the checks were genuine and were meant to be used to prepare their wedding.

The woman, who had wired around US$40,000 to the man before receiving the checks, also accepted the check's authenticity because of the receipt and because the image of the man in his Skype account looked like Petraeus, prosecutors said.

As a result, the office decided not to press charges against Liu for forging checks.

(By Liu Shi-yi and Kay Liu)