German arrested in “black money” currency-counterfeiting scam

0
535

A German man promised a chance to literally make easy money ended up helping police apprehend a fellow countryman suspected of perpetrating a “black money” currency-counterfeiting scam.

Winfried Raimond Waldemar Sidert, 50, sought out police after claiming he’d been duped by fellow German Peter-Jurgen Gramm, who allegedly had offered to sell him – for only 10,000 baht – the materials needed to make the equivalent of millions of baht in counterfeit U.S. dollars.

But when would-be counterfeiter discovered his supposed fortune was only a stack of black-coated paper that supposedly needed to be treated with special chemicals to make it legal tender, Sidert realized his greed-fueled folly and turned informant, offering to help police arrest the 50-year-old Gramm.

German Peter-Jurgen Gramm (seated, back center) has been remanded to custody for allegedly trying to work the Nigerian “black money” currency-counterfeiting scam. German Peter-Jurgen Gramm (seated, back center) has been remanded to custody for allegedly trying to work the Nigerian “black money” currency-counterfeiting scam.

And arrest him they did. Authorities had Sidert set up a meeting to buy the paper and chemicals from Gramm Feb. 21 at Tops Supermarket in Central Pattaya. When money changed hands, the handcuffs came out.

Police seized 1,900 pieces of black-coated and 190 pieces of U.S. dollar-green cut paper, three bottles of an unknown chemical in soda bottles. They also found Gramm’s passport, which showed he’d overstayed his visa by a week.

Lt. Col. Kreetha Tankanarak said police had received a number of complaints about Gramm, but that the German often changed residences and was hard to apprehend.

Gramm was charged with embezzlement and overstaying his visa. The visa was revoked and he is being deported and blacklisted from the Kingdom after he is processed through the Thai legal system, which most likely will include a prolonged stay in Chonburi prison.