Informant led to arrest in bogus money scheme

May 16, 1997


Staff Writer

Jerry Edwin Petry's "money-making" operation came to light May 1 when an informant went to his home west of Hancock to buy some bogus $100 bills, according to allegations contained in court records.

According to court records filed Thursday in Washington County District Court, Petry has been charged with two counts of forgery of public documents and two counts of uttering forged currency.

Bond was set at $50,000.

Federal agents raided Petry's house at 3600 National Pike Wednesday and charged him with counterfeiting and weapons possession, authorities said.

Petry, 47, has yet to be arraigned on federal charges of possession of explosives and possession of firearms.

In the court records detailing the alleged counterfeiting scheme, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms met with the informant on May 1 and arranged for the person to go to Petry's house at 9 p.m. to purchase bogus bills.


After he was taken into custody Wednesday, Petry allegedly admitted using his personal computer and printer to create between 200 to 350 $100 bills, beginning in early April, according to court records.

Despite the poor quality of the bills produced, Petry was hoping to sell them to someone, rather than trying to spend them himself, court records said.

Cpl. Bob Leatherman of the Washington County Narcotics Task Force was the arresting officer.

Initially, Petry was held in the Washington County Detention Center Wednesday afternoon while agents from the U.S. Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms searched his home, First Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Schenning said.

Officials do not believe any of the phony bills were circulated, Schenning said.

If convicted of the state charges, Petry faces up to 10 years in prison on each of the forgery charges and three years and/or $3,000 fines for uttering.

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