Detectives at the Law Enforcement Center said a counterfeiting case in Charlotte is unusual because of how many people are involved and how many counterfeit checks they've uncovered.
They said it's just one part of a much larger problem.
Detective Andrew Phillips said these checks were seized after police in South Carolina chased a car filled with suspected counterfeiters from a store in Fort Mill across the state line into Charlotte.
Police believe four men were recruited to cash counterfeit checks by Andrew Tabb, who Eyewitness News found has a long list of previous convictions for forgery and passing worthless checks.
Fraud detectives said counterfeiters obtain account numbers from businesses and then use computers and printers to create new, fake checks drawn on those accounts.
They then try to pass them at grocery stores and other businesses that cash payroll checks.
"Quite a number," Phillips said. "About 40 checks so far."
Investigators are in the process of notifying legitimate businesses, like Alexander Funeral Home in Charlotte and Clinton Junior College in Rock Hill, that their accounts were used by the counterfeiters.
In the case of Tabb, police said they're now working with Secret Service agents to pursue possible federal charges.
Police said there's no telling how many companies have been victimized by counterfeits.
"It's been working well for quite some time. Sometimes you catch them and sometimes we don't," Phillips said.
Detectives said they're now hoping to examine computers found in Tabb's home to see if there's evidence of other counterfeiting.
Because some of these checks were passed in South Carolina, the five men arrested could also face charges there.