• Kyodo

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Philippine police said Tuesday they have arrested a Japanese man suspected of being behind the passing of fake yen bills in Manila.

Toshiharu Mitsui, 49, from Hiratsuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, was arrested Monday after a taxi driver complained to police the previous day that Mitsui had paid him with a yen bill that turned out to be counterfeit.

Members of a special police unit under the Department of Interior and Local Governments arrested Mitsui near his hotel in Manila’s Ermita district.

The police found 24 fake 10,000 yen bills on Mitsui, each bearing the same serial number, and found another 300 fake 10,000 yen bills with the same serial number in his room.

“The money looks so real that anyone could be fooled, but we checked and found that the serial numbers on the bills are the same,” said Superintendent Carlos Baltazar, head of the task force.

The police said Mitsui told them he works for a computer company in Japan and that he manufactured the fake money by himself with the aid of a computer.

The Japanese Embassy said Mitsui works as a computer instructor in Japan and arrived in the Philippines as a tourist on Sept. 15.

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