Forgery may be defined as the creation of any false written document or alteration of a genuine one, with the intent to defraud. Forgery is also committed by  offering, issuing or transferring such a writing in an attempt to defraud another .

Modes of forgery may include bills of exchange, bills of lading, promissory notes, checks, bonds, receipts, order for money or goods, mortgages, discharges of mortgages, deeds, bonds, records, account books and certain kind of tickets or passes for transportation or events etc.

Types of forgery

For the purpose of the subject of identification and comparison of signature and writing, forgeries may be classified as:

1. Freehand, simulated or copied forgery

2. Traced forgery

3. Forgery by memory

4. Forgery without model or forgery by impersonation

1. Simulated Forgery

In this style of forgery, the forger selects a model signature and tries to repeat the design of letters and other broad features depending upon his skill, practice and competency. Such an attempt in most of the cases results in a crude forgery, however, in some cases the forger is competent enough to make a simulation which at first sight may appear to be genuine and may be passed as genuine by those who compare only the general outline of letters and gives little importance to the line quality and other minute details.

A forger may be able to acquire all the writing habits of another individual by a long practice but practically it is not possible to adopt each and every writing habit of another person and to avoid one’s own writing habits to interact in the process of forgery the forger is likely to fail all attempts.

Motives which incites the forger to simulate a real signature:

– Mainly to extort money illegally and it is this anticipation of gain and urges a person to do such wrongful actions.

– Other options could also  be domestic or personal satisfaction.

2. Traced Forgery

 As the name indicates, traced forgery is prepared by drawing the outline of a genuine signature by the process of tracing. One of the most common methods used by forger is to make an outline of genuine signature on a paper by the use of a carbon paper. A carbon paper is placed in between the paper bearing the model signature and the paper which is to bear the forged signature.

The tracing is done with the help of a pointed instrument to make a carbon outline on the paper. A conventional writing instrument is then carefully moved over the carbon outline to conceal the carbon impressions and to give the appearance of its being genuine. The indentation so produced serve as guidelines which are then filled in with ink with writing instrument to complete the forgery.

The third most well liked  method nowadays is transmitted light method. The forger places a paper (which is to bear the forged signature) over the document bearing genuine signature and then both the documents are placed against a window pan.

The outlines of signature thus made visible by the sun light passing through the paper are placed on a glass top table and the light is projected from under to increase the translucency of the papers. A forged signature can only be considered  as a traced forgery when:

1. The actual or original  signature from which it was traced is discovered.

2. The pencil or carbon outlines are present along with the signature indicating tracing process.

3. The indented outlines are present together with the strokes of signature.

4. Two or more forged signature showing marked suspicious similarities or rubber stamp effects are present and they superimpose each other in their major parts.

3. Forgery by memory

 Forgery by memory refers to the signature or writing prepared from the mental impression of the form of letters of the signature(s) or writing of the actual writer and without any model signature before the forger at the time of forgery, such forgeries are usually the combinations of the normal handwriting of the forger and letter bearing some resemblance with the signature(s) or writing of the actual writer.

The degree of resemblance of course, depends on the ability of the forger to memorize and reproduce the letter forms. Such type of forgeries can be easily detected as the forgery by memory is a oldest  type of forgery and no forger can memorize or reproduce all the individual features or characteristics of the signature or writing to be forged.

4. Forgery by Impersonation or forgery without model

 When a person merely writes/signs the name of another person in his own handwriting in normal manner or in some modified manner, representing himself to be that person with some ulterior motive like signature could be  a forgery.

n this type of forgery, no attempt is made to stimulate or trace from a model signature and once the genuine signatures of the actual person is available, the forgery is obvious and to prove the same is not difficult. In this type of forgery, the forger may just write the name/signature of other person in his own handwriting without even knowing the style of writing of that person. In such case, it may be possible to trace out the forger by comparison of the spurious signature with adequate specimen signature of the suspect(s).

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