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Posted: 10/30/2002 11:57:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/31/2002 12:05:17 AM EDT by raven]
Last year, I was working on a construction job. The superintendant was a 77 year old man named Ray. Ray, being an old man, often held workers hostage with his stories as old men are notorious for doing. But one of them was rather good, so I thought I'd share it. After serving as an enlisted man in Greenland during WWII, Ray moved to Washington state to work as a laborer on the hydro dam projects on the Columbia River. He befriended a fellow vet (whose name I forget). This guy would mention every once in a while that he was just going to work until he had $10,000, and then he'd never work another day in his life. Asked to elaborate, he'd clam up. This guy scrimped and saved, never went out on the town. He just kept referring to the magic sum of $10,000 until one day he came up to Ray and said "Ray, it's been nice knowing you. But I've got my $10,000, so I thought I'd say goodbye before we part ways." He quit that day, and left. Work on the dam continued, then several months later, Mr. $10,000 showed up again looking for work. Since his scheme had failed, there was no longer any reason to keep it secret, so he told Ray what his early retirement plan had been. During WWII, while Ray had been a radioman in Greenland, this guy had been in the Army in Western Europe, fighting the Germans. On a patrol in a jeep mounted with a recoiless rifle, he and two of his comrades came across a bank. They were scouting ahead of the main forces, and greed getting the better part of them, they checked out the bank. They found the main vault, locked. Lucky for them, they had an armor-piercing RR, and blasted open the vault. Inside, they found thousands and thousands of 5 pound British bank notes. Seizing the opportunity, they took out duffle bags and stuffed them full of the banknotes. Then they each struck out seperately from the bank, burying their individual looted hoard. The idea being, if they brought the loot back to the lines, they'd certainly be busted. They buried their loot to come back for it after the war. And this was exactly what Mr. $10k did. He went back to the old war zone, dug up his loot, and headed straight for Paris a rich man. Life was pretty good for a couple of weeks, until there was a knock at his hotel door. The French police. It turns out that the British banknotes he and his comrades had looted were counterfeits. Counterfeited by Nazi Germany. As a scheme to both undermine the British and enrich the Nazi elite, the Nazis bailed the most skilled counterfeiters, forgers, and engravers out of the prisons and concentration camps of occupied Europe. They gave these skilled men all sorts of perks and comfortable quarters and the resources of Germany at their disposal, in exchange for forging British currency. When they produced a very convincing 5 pound note, the Nazis sent agents to Switzerland with some samples. The agents went to Swiss banks with these notes. They told the Swiss they feared that they were counterfeits, and had come from unreputable sources. The Swiss declared the notes absolutely bona fide currency, and perfectly welcome in their vaults. With this news, the Nazis let the presses run. These were the notes the American soldiers had looted from the bank vault, and the existence of them was learned by the Allies after the war. They wre on the lookout for these notes, which led to Mr. $10k getting busted in Paris. Another guy got busted too. The third of them took his loot from Europe to Argentina and exchanged them into dollars there, and presumably got away with it. The End.
Link Posted: 10/31/2002 12:26:20 AM EDT
I love a good story - thanks Raven
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