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Filipino couple charged with trying to pass fake money

04 January 2021

By Vir B. Lumicao 

A fake $500 bank note compared with a genuine one 

Two Filipinos, a man and a woman, have appeared in Eastern Court charged with three counts of using bogus Hong Kong dollar bills and coins in trying to pay for food.

Three other cases against Calvin Castrillo and Rhea Maristela were dropped when they appeared today, Jan 4, before Magistrate Bina Chainrai.

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The magistrate ordered the cases to be moved to the District Court on Jan. 21, when the accused will be asked to plead to the charges against them.

Maristela, 25, and Castrillo, 38, allegedly used a fake $500 bank note to buy food at a MacDonald's shop in North Point.

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They were arrested after they again attempted to use another fake $500 bill to pay for the food they ate on the evening of the same day in the same restaurant.


Chainrai instructed the pair to hire a private counsel for the District Court hearing or apply for a lawyer through the Legal Aid Department to represent them in court.

Maristela did not apply for bail while her co-defendant, Castrillo, offered a $3,000 bail money for his temporary release. However, his application was denied by Chainrai who said he may not appear again in the next hearing, as he had done a few times in the past.\

The magistrate ordered Castrillo’s arrest on May 13 after he failed to appear in a hearing of a gambling case along with three co-defendants. He was arrested later but missed his hearing again on Sept 11, prompting the court to seize his $1,000 bail money.

At the Oct 14 hearing of the bogus currency case with Maristela, who was also his  co-accused in the gambling case, Castrillo was again a no-show.

 The magistrate ordered both to be remanded in custody until their next court appearance.

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