YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Wyckoff police yesterday arrested a Paterson couple who they said were producing thousands of in counterfeit bills of relatively small denominations that they used to buy heroin – and gift cards.
It began on Saturday when a local Walgreens alerted Wyckoff police to counterfeit fives, tens and twenties the couple passed at the store, Police Chief Benjamin Fox said this morning.
A different Walgreens stopped the passing of similar bills earlier this month, and the woman trying to use them ran out of the store, he said.
Surveillance video from both stores helped detectives identify the couple – identified as Christine M. Alvino, 29, and Joseph J. Nunally, 31, of Paterson — who Fox said were out again yesterday passing funny money of various denominations at stores in town and in Midland Park.
“They typically made small purchases to obtain change or buy gift cards,” the chief said.
Once again, they were caught on video, he said.
Paterson Police were contacted and found both yesterday at their River Road home.
Wyckoff Police Sgt. Daniel Kellogg and a Midland Park police officer then went there and arrested them. Meanwhile, Wyckoff Police Detective Sgt. Joseph Soto obtained a search warrant.
The three officers, accompanied by Paterson police and a U.S. Secret Service agent, then found thousands in fake currency and the equipment used to make it, along with heroin, hypodermic syringes and the gift cards, in the apartment.
Both Alvino and Nunally were being held on $57,500 bail each in the Bergen County Jail. They are charged with counterfeiting U.S. currency, producing forged documents and theft.
The investigation was continuing, Fox said.
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