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The E-Sylum:  Volume 10, Number 37, September 16, 2007, Article 20

BRITISH BANKNOTES STUDIED FOR DRUG CONTAMINATION

According to a BBC News report published Thursday, "Almost every UK
banknote in circulation is tinged with drugs such as cocaine and heroin...
But the residue levels are on average the same throughout the UK - even
if the note hails from an area where drug use is rife.

"The findings are now being used to link money that has an unusually
high drug contamination to drug crime.

"The Bristol-based scientists analysed tens of thousands of banknotes
from general circulation to work out the average drug profile of the
UK's banknotes.

"Karl Ebejer, from Mass Spec Analytical, who worked on the study,
said: 'We are pretty much talking about all banknotes being contaminated
with cocaine; one in 20 are contaminated with heroin or cannabis; and
on average less than half are contaminated with ecstasy and amphetamines.

"'We are talking traces - these are amounts we cannot see or feel, these
are amounts that require sensitive instrumentation to detect. They are
in the order of nanograms (billionths of a gram).'

"They looked at 10 and 20 notes taken from eight different locations:
Oxford, Folkestone, Grangemouth, Cardiff, Troon, Dunfermline,
Burntisland and Pontyclun.

"These were chosen to represent places that were urban, rural, rich,
poor, ports of entry and those that had high and low crime rates, to
see if any of these factors had an influence on the amount of drug
residues found.

"Gavin Lloyd, from Bristol University who carried out the experiment,
said: 'We found that none of the factors were significant, the
contamination was exactly the same.'

"The researchers believe note contamination is caused by drug use
but also as notes brush up against each other in cash sorting
machines..."

To read the complete article, see: Full Story

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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