CINCINNATI (CBS4) – A Miami man is on the run, his suspected partner behind bars, after they allegedly went on several spending sprees in Ohio using phony $100 bills.

Hilde Brando Uscategui, 41, and Stuart Rodriguez, 21, reportedly smuggled the counterfeit bills in the U.S. from South American in the headrests of rental cars. They then toured the country, spending the phony bills to buy items and gift cards; in return they received real money in change.

Rodriguez was arrested Wednesday. Authorities are searching for Uscategui.

A federal indictment handed up by a federal grand jury in Cincinnati claims the men passed the fake money between January and September 2010 on “road trips” in Cincinnati and other areas.

Each is charged with conspiracy to pass counterfeit currency, conspiracy to launder money and two counts of passing and possessing counterfeit currency.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  1. Roberto says:

    I am sorry, USA, but this is what you get when you do not control who comes into your country, and what they come for.

    Letting any and everybody come and go whenever they want hurts a lot of people in a lot of places.

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