TWO East Lancashire men were due to appear in court today charged in connection with an alleged plot to produce £20,000-worth of counterfeit coins.

Yasim Patel, 35, of Glenfield Close and Eric Wong, 42, of Woodstock Crescent, both Blackburn, were arrested following an operation mounted by the high profile National Crime Squad.

They face a charge of conspiracy to possess and distribute counterfeit coins.

They were arrested last year by detectives who swooped on two cars parked in Elkmills Retail Park in Royton, close to Oldham.

Police searched the two vehicles and allegedly seized around £20,000-worth of counterfeit £1 coins stored in black bin liners.

Following the arrest, detectives searched a business address in Heckmondwike, West Yorkshire.

They uncovered equipment and material consistent with smelting and the manufacture of £1 coins.

The two men were expected to appear for trial at Manchester Crown Court this morning.