By Latrishka Thomas
Police are urging residents to immediately report any discovery of the circulation of counterfeit Eastern Caribbean currency.
Just recently, photos of a fake $100 polymer bank note detected in Antigua and Barbuda were circulating on social media.
As a result, Commissioner of Police Atlee Rodney is cautioning the public.
“If they suspect that the money is fake, we always ask them to come and make an official report and then we take it to the Central Bank to verify that it is in truth and in fact a counterfeit currency.
“So, we would still encourage them that if you are suspicious of some currency in your possession to bring it to the police so that we can investigate the matter,” he advised.
Rodney said that the police have not yet received any such report from any member of the public but have alerted the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) to the possibility.
“From the information that was on social media I have already made contact with the Central Bank in St Kitts, so they are monitoring the situation too because to classify a document as counterfeit currency it has to come from the Central Bank,” he shared.
The ECCB launched its new family of EC polymer banknotes on May 29 2019.
Polymer banknotes are produced from a thin, transparent and flexible plastic film made from polypropylene.
The ECCB said it made the decision to change the material on which the EC banknotes are printed from paper to polymer because polymer banknotes stay cleaner than paper notes as they are resistant to dirt and moisture. They can also incorporate advanced security features which make them more difficult to counterfeit, and they last at least two and a half times longer than paper notes, making them more environmentally friendly.