Promoters of these banknotes, whose serial numbers have been deactivated, are mostly active on social media.
“They broadcast videos of bags filled with millions of frozen dollars and invite people to join their groups on some platforms, and they are able to hunt some who wish to accumulate illegal wealth,” Bou Ghantos told the National News Agency.
These promoters advertise their willingness to deliver to any region, not only in Lebanon but also in neighboring countries.
Bou Ghantous expressed concern that many Lebanese could fall victim to manipulation and be tricked into believing unusable dollars are valid or be “exposed to kidnappings, theft, or the like” when buying them.
He said these frozen dollars, which banks do not accept, might be sold in Lebanon as valid at junctions and in alleys and by motorcyclists traveling between regions.
Additionally, he warned that occasionally flooding the market with frozen dollars “will contribute more and more to hitting the exchange rate of the Lebanese pound and may lead, over time, to the scarcity of the real and legitimate dollars in the market.”
This, Bou Ghantous stressed, would threaten the reliability of the legitimate U.S. dollars that people have stored in their homes.
As such, he called on people not to buy dollars “except when absolutely necessary and after ensuring the safety of the banknotes and the credibility of their source.”