Police allege a man conned local retail stores — buying merchandise with counterfeit cash, then having his crime cronies return the items for a refund and 100 percent illicit gain.

Police say the scheme unraveled Thursday when employees at a sporting goods store at the Glynn Place Mall called the cops after a man allegedly tried to unload merchandise that had been bought the day before with bogus bills. Responding police nabbed two alleged scammers and their getaway car at the Glynn Place Mall. Later, police spotted another suspect walking around the mall parking lot. He allegedly made a run for it, but police apprehended him as well.

Officers located methamphetamine inside the getaway car, police said.

Police arrested Paul Ralph Clark, 38, and charged him with three counts of forgery, theft, criminal attempted theft and willful obstruction of the law. Police arrested David Sheppard Clinton, 37, and charged him with second degree forgery, possession of meth and also charged him on outstanding arrest warrants. Police arrested Chazlyn Brown, 30, and charged her with possession of meth.

Police allege Clark of passing counterfeit cash to purchase items at several area retail stores and recruiting people to return the merchandise for the refund. When an alleged scammer attempted to do just that Thursday with items purchased at Hibbett Sports in the Glynn Place Mall, an alert employee called the cops, police said

Police returned hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise and seized an undisclosed amount of counterfeit money as a result of the arrests.

“Retail theft costs Americans over $30 billion dollars each year, leading to higher prices on good and services,” Glynn County Police Capt. Michael Robinson said.

Robinson encourages retailers to report suspected counterfeiters immediately. More information on identifying counterfeit money is available at: www.uscurrency.org.

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