Drugs on your money?

Sam Seneviratne


It is already public knowledge that there are traces of cocaine on the majority of UK banknotes and US dollar bills [1]. This paper investigates how many notes and therefore how much currency a person would need to qualify for being in possession of 100 mg and 5 g of cocaine which, in usual circumstances, would be seen as a criminal offence [2]. On average, to accumulate 100 mg of cocaine on UK sterling £ 5 notes, a person would need £ 17,575. To accumulate the same amount of cocaine on US $ 1 bills the total came to $ 3,782. To accumulate 5 g worth on £ 5 notes a person would need £ 878,350 whilst for US $ 1 bills this came to $ 175,670. In usual circumstances, possession of cocaine in this quantity would result in a maximum sentence of 7 years and 6 months imprisonment [3].


Health; Probability/Statistics; Cocaine

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