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Free money? Mysterious person leaving $50 bills around Metro Vancouver

Video shows an Instagram user hiding a $50 bill outside a Port Coquitlam, B.C., high school. Video shows an Instagram user hiding a $50 bill outside a Port Coquitlam, B.C., high school.
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For several weeks, a mysterious social media user has apparently been leaving $50 bills hidden across Metro Vancouver.

The individual – so far identified only by the username "Mr. $50 World" – began stashing the cash in early May, each time posting videos on TikTok and Instagram hinting at the location.

"Where could this be?" reads an enticing caption on one post. "Find it and take it."

The $50 bills, which are hidden under distinctive red-and-white stickers, have been left everywhere from Granville Island in Vancouver to Archbishop Carney Regional Secondary School in Port Coquitlam.

The enigmatic individual's reasons for doing so – beyond building an online following – are unclear. The only stated request of recipients of the cash is to "please verify" they have claimed it by taking a picture with the sticker.

A spokesperson for the B.C. RCMP told CTV News authorities do not have any specific concerns about the account, but suggested anyone chasing after the cash should exercise reasonable caution.

"We always encourage people to be mindful when engaging with unknown parties on social media," Sgt. Vanessa Munn said in an email.

Each of the social media posts includes the hashtag #cashcatch, which has been used more than 5,000 times on Instagram alone, including on videos of people similarly hiding free money in other parts of the world. One shows someone tucking a 100 euro note into a wooden bench in Paris. 

"Mr. $50 World" continued the curious giveaway multiple times on a recent trip to Las Vegas, in some cases swapping the usual red Canadian $50s for green U.S. bills.

CTV News has reached out to the account for more information, but has not received a response.

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