Guilty Plea For Visalia Man Said To Have Passed $5K In Fake Money

A 44-year-old Visalia man pleaded guilty Monday morning to counterfeiting, the Department of Justice announced.

Tony Choate was said to have manufactured and used counterfeit $100 dollar bills with matching serial numbers to purchase a computer laptop and welder from sellers in Tulare County between July and August 2012.

Authorities say Choate passed more than $5,000 in counterfeit money in Fresno, Tulare and Santa Cruz Counties.

Choate also possessed counterfeit money, laser printers and color copiers for making counterfeit money, and counterfeit detection pens, according to a news release from the Department of Justice.

Choate has been in custody since his arrest on March 7.

He is scheduled to be sentenced on July 22 and faces a 25-years sentence in prison and a $250,000 fine.