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Off topic: The importance of a good proofreader :-)
Thread poster: PB Trans
PB Trans

Local time: 05:59
French to English
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Nov 2, 2003

Hello everyone! I am relatively new here. As my first post, I'd like to share this article with you. I've retitled it as "The importance of a good proofreader".

Canadian jailed for plotting multi-trillion dollar fraud: Men betrayed by typo, ink-jet printer


LONDON—A Canadian engineer and a brilliant but flawed forensic scientist have been sentenced to six years in prison for plotting a multi-trillion dollar fraud.

Michael Slamaj, 53, a Yugoslav native who moved to Canada 30 years ago, was driven by "greed" in trying to peddle fake bonds around the world, Judge William Birtles said yesterday. Briton Graham Halksworth, 69, who helped invent the fingerprinting system for Scotland Yard, authenticated $2.5 trillion (U.S.) of bogus Treasury bonds, only to be caught by a simple spelling mistake.


During trial, the men recounted an extraordinary story of the bonds' origins. In 1934, Chinese Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek, fearing invasion from the Japanese, ordered his supporters to send 125,000 tonnes of Chinese gold to America, and, in a covert deal with then-president Franklin Roosevelt, were given U.S. bonds in return.

But the bonds never reached China. The B-29 plane carrying them crashed after stopping to refuel in the Philippines. The men said the bonds, packed in metal containers, remained buried in the jungle for decades before Slamaj was offered them by locals during a trip to Asia.

Police said Slamaj and Halksworth were part of a criminal network that imported bonds from gangs in the Philippines.

The con started to unravel when two men tried to cash $25 million (U.S.) in notes at a bank in Toronto in February 2001.

A sharp-eyed Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer noticed some of the bonds, dated 1934, said "dollar" instead of "dollars," and raised the alarm. Later, London police were notified when more notes bearing Halksworth's stamp were presented at a bank in Hong Kong.


Police determined the bonds had been run off on an ink-jet printer, another tip to their lack of authenticity since the machine wasn't invented until decades later.


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Local time: 00:59
Member (2002)
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Good one !! Nov 4, 2003

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The importance of a good proofreader :-)

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