Rebecca Quilliam

Rebecca Quilliam is senior reporter at the APNZ News Service office in Wellington.

Man spends $170k bank error on Holdens

Douglas withdrew the money and bought three Holden vehicles. Photo / File
Douglas withdrew the money and bought three Holden vehicles. Photo / File

A sickness beneficiary who had more than $170,000 transferred into his bank account in error withdrew the money and spent the lot on Holdens.

Denys Jeremy Douglas, 61, from Hastings, pleaded guilty to seven charges of using a document and three charges of money laundering when he appeared in the Napier District Court yesterday, Fairfax reported.

A summary of facts said the BNZ bank had agreed to loan Douglas $7000 for home maintenance, which would have taken his mortgage to $172, 250.

However, the bank accidentally credited his account for the amount.

Within a month, Douglas had withdrawn the money and bought three Holden vehicles, which he registered in other people's names.

He told the bank he had won the money in a lottery and claimed it was "normal" to make $50,000 withdrawals, Fairfax reported.

It was not until his mortgage repayments went into arrears that the bank realised its mistake.

Douglas was remanded on bail until his sentencing later this month.

In a statement to APNZ, a BNZ spokeswoman said Douglas used funds that were incorrectly allocated to his account due to a "keying error".

"When BNZ contacted Mr Douglas he said he won some money from a lottery.

"Debt recovery was undertaken through the bank's usual processes and the matter was forwarded to police for criminal investigation."

The spokeswoman said nobody was available to be interviewed on the subject.

- APNZ

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