Thieves stole a "large amount" of $100 bills bound for the Federal Reserve last week.
You may have heard of a victimless crime, but this theft of $100 bills may have also been a crime with no immediate beneficiaries either.
That's because the stolen money is a stack of newly-designed $100 bills that are not expected to be in circulation until 2013, reports CNN.
As a result, the unknown thieves are carrying the equivalent of Monopoly money until the new currency actually does hit the streets.
One can only imagine the surprise on the faces of the thieves when they uncovered their bounty to discover foreign-looking currency. The new $100 bills feature a large gold "100" graphic on the back, and an orange box on the front with a faint image of the Liberty Bell, reports CNN.
The theft was seemingly well executed too. The money had been on an air shipment from Dallas to Philadelphia. Only when the shipment reached its New Jersey destination did the courier service transporting the bills report some money missing, reports CNN. It wasn't reported how much of the new currency was stolen, but reports say that it was substantial.
Once the thieves are caught, it will be interesting to see how a court handles their criminal penalties. For crimes like theft and burglary, the penalty oftentimes depends upon the amount stolen. A creative criminal defense attorney could try to argue that the thieves stole worthless pieces of paper, given how the money could not be used until 2013.
But given how there's only a few months before 2013, the money likely has some street value even in 2012. And a judge and jury will probably not be too sympathetic on the dumb criminals who got everything right except for the bounty they stole.
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