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BCSO warns of dyed-black money scam

SAN ANTONIO – Bundles of cash, no strings attached.

Suitcases full of black construction paper turned into real money, at least that's their pitch.

"They take a $100 bill, they use Elmer's glue, they soak it in iodine and then that turns the bill black," said Lt. Keith Goodell, with the Bexar County Sheriff's Office.

The Sheriff's Office calls it the dyed-black money scam.

Scammers convince their victims that suitcases full of black construction paper is actually real money that had to coated black to smuggle out of a corrupt country.

"What happens after that is they take the real bill that's blacked out and they put it in warm water and soap and clean it off, and you have a fresh clean $100 bill," said Goodell. 

It turns out, the only real bill is the one washed off.

Goodell said most people don't realize it until they're stuck with a few dollars worth of construction paper.

"If it's too good to be true, I mean, who's going to invest $25,000 and get $50,000 right there in a hotel room? It just doesn't make sense," said Goodell.

Goodell said crooks set the bait online.

"They are casting out a web of a number of different websites, Craigslist and all that, so 10,000 people see and three people fall victim to it. They are making their money," Goodell said.

With the real money in their hands, the con men set off for another town, ready to find their next victims.