BILLINGS - A 24-year-old illegal immigrant has pleaded guilty to federal charges that he passed more than $12,000 in counterfeit money in Billings and Great Falls last year.

Victor Raul Andia pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiracy to pass counterfeit currency and to counterfeiting. U.S. Magistrate Carolyn Ostby of Billings says she will recommend that U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull accept Andia's guilty pleas.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Fehr says businesses in Billings and Great Falls began receiving the counterfeit $100 bills in March 2009. The counterfeit money was made in Peru.

Andia was identified as a suspect through surveillance photos from businesses.

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