Do drug dealers stamp their money?
May 11, 2013 11:13 AM   Subscribe

I saw a post on tumblr, about why some larger bills have little stamps on them. The reason they gave is that drug dealers will stamp the bills to keep track of them. This makes absolutely no sense to me. So question one is, does this sound accurate? Does anyone have any way of saying if this is or isn't true? Question two, why the heck are these stamps on bills? Here's a picture of a purported drug dealer stamped bill.
posted by trogdole to Work & Money (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know why there are so many ridiculous urban legends about things that drug dealers purportedly do (i do, really, it's because the war on drugs is stupid and awful) but I really cannot see a single beneficial reason for criminals to use some kind of secret code which could allow the tracking of their finances by an outside party.

Pretty sure that the reason there are little stamps on those bills are because the little stamps exist and people are whimsical.

Although I GUESS it could be something with counterfeit-detecting ink?
posted by elizardbits at 11:29 AM on May 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

That stamp looks like one for little kids' ... and why would a drug dealer want money to be traceable to him? Seems to me that would just open him up to legal trouble if he's caught.
posted by easily confused at 11:32 AM on May 11, 2013 [1 favorite]

Drug dealers are often robbed. They are viewed as attractive targets because they are reluctant to report robberies to the police. If they are going to seek their own justice by going after the robbers (they may know the robbers, or have ways of finding the robbers--the gang/criminal underworld can be quite small) it stands to reason that they would like the money to be marked so, if they find a suspected robber with a lot of cash, they can confirm it's theirs.
posted by Unified Theory at 11:34 AM on May 11, 2013 [7 favorites]

The last thing drug dealers would want are bills that can be traced back to them personally. Why give law enforcement more - any - evidence at all? But then again most drug dealers don't do proper risk management so I guess it's a possibility.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 11:41 AM on May 11, 2013

Another possibility is that these bills are marked to indicate that they've been entered into the Where's George? database, run by a community of individuals who find it interesting to track currency as it circulates around the country. Back in 2008 one member actually asked about using horse stamps.

If you've got a picture of a marked bill that includes the bill's serial number, try searching for the number in the "Where's George?" database.
posted by RichardP at 11:44 AM on May 11, 2013 [7 favorites]

I'm pretty sure those are verification stamps/chops, used when high value US currency is traded overseas, by overseas traders. It's their way of "verifying" that it's "genuine".
posted by Sphinx at 11:52 AM on May 11, 2013 [4 favorites]

Yeah those are almost always Chop Marks like Sphinx said.
posted by Captain_Science at 1:25 PM on May 11, 2013 [3 favorites]

Chop marks! Thanks guys.
posted by trogdole at 2:46 PM on May 11, 2013

« Older Help me learn old school web design   |   Best off licence near Oval tube station Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.