Man pleads guilty of passing bogus bill |

Man pleads guilty of passing bogus bill

Christina Proctor

A South Lake Tahoe man accused of trying to pass counterfeit $100 bills admitted his guilt at his arraignment Tuesday in Douglas County District Court.

Paul James Kempel, 25, pleaded guilty to one felony charge of passing a bogus bill. His sentencing will be sometime in July. Kempel also faces two felony charges in California for possession of a forged instrument and possession of counterfeit bills. Those allegations came after a search warrant was served at his apartment on the 4000 block of Lake Tahoe Boulevard. Agents found 87 more counterfeit $100 bills.

Kempel, whom investigators believe has only been on the South Shore for a short while, was arrested May 26 after he tried to pass a $100 bill to a Caesars Tahoe keno operator. The bills allegedly found at Kempel’s apartment were all the same series and serial number as the one confiscated at Caesars. The bills are a 1996 series with the serial number AL92415558C.

Besides the South Lake Tahoe Police Department and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department, Kempel is under investigation by the Secret Service. Agents said that about $40,000 worth of these bills turned up in Southern California, Arizona, Nevada, and Washington. Investigators said the phony bills appeared in areas where Kempel has relatives.

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