Four teenage boys who were reportedly trying to pass phony money were apprehended after a clerk wrote down their license plate number.

According to the Sonoma Police Department, on April 7, a young man tried to buy something with one of the faux $20 bills at Basque Boulangerie. The clerk took one look at the bill that had “For Motion Picture Use Only” on numerous places on the bill, and refused to take it.

Prop money, used in movies and TV shows, is intended to look authentic at a glance – but it will feature phrases like “for motion picture use only” where “the United States of America” is typically emblazoned. The likenesses of Ben Franklin or other founding fathers are slightly different, as well. The bills have a smoother texture than real money and don’t pass a currency “pen” test designed to detect counterfeit bills.

The teen left the store, but the clerk followed him out and took down the license plate of the vehicle the young miscreant got into.

It didn’t take long for Sheriff’s deputies to find the vehicle.

The teens had tried passing the faux bills at eight businesses – and they were successful twice.

The four youths – two 14-year-olds, a 15-year-old and a 16-year-old – were all booked on making/using unauthorized paper money and felony conspiracy charges. The 16-year-old was also cited for being an unlicensed driver.

Two of the teens were transported to juvenile hall while the other two were cited out to their parents.

Email Bill at bill.hoban@sonomanews.com.