Why would someone need to dispose of a huge amount of cash — tens of thousands of euros — very quickly? That’s what authorities in Geneva, Switzerland, want to know, after finding wads of foreign cash clogging toilets at a bank and at restaurants around the city.
The euro is a useful currency for stashing huge amounts of ill-gotten money, since its largest note is worth almost $600. The U.S. dollar now tops out at the $100 bill.
Yet who flushed the cash, and why did they do it? The first notes were discovered in a toilet near the safety-deposit box department at a Geneva branch of UBS. It’s possible that someone may have kept a large amount of cash in one of the boxes and disposed of it after retrieving it.
The mystery deepened a few days later, when restaurants in Geneva found that their toilets were clogged with cut-up cash as well.
Police say that someone tried to cut the bills up before flushing them, but why were they destroying so much cash in the first place? We may never know.
It’s worth noting that it’s not technically a crime to destroy banknotes in Switzerland. Still, the bill-flusher’s behavior indicates that he or she was trying to hide some other activity from authorities.