national

Man mistakenly sent ¥46.3 mil in COVID funds gambles it all away

103 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

103 Comments

Comments have been disabled You can no longer respond to this thread.

Easy come, easy go...!

9 ( +16 / -7 )

Suuuuuuuure he did.

24 ( +27 / -3 )

"...overseas casino sites,"

With the emphasis on the word 'overseas', you understand [not as if such sites exist in safety Nippon!]

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

What a legend...and degenerate.

10 ( +16 / -6 )

The man is unlikely to be able to return the money transferred to him in error by the town of Abu, Yamaguchi Prefecture, according to his lawyer, who said a resolution through litigation is being considered.

Young man with smart phone in small quiet town, with that amount of money what he could do? Just spent all his money for fun.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I hope the civil servant morons who “mistakenly” gave this man the money are also punished.

33 ( +34 / -1 )

should be pretty easy to verify that claim.

20 ( +22 / -2 )

Haha. What a degen. I wonder if he will still receive his share of the second payout. probably

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The man wasn't originally from the town, he moved there to take advantage of the town offer to rent out the old abandoned houses to younger people to populate their ageing population.

If the police have his phone, they can easily verify if he spent the money on online gambling.

19 ( +21 / -2 )

He is smart. He move all his money to a secure location and sell all his possession and asset. Then claim he gamble all the money away. So even if the government want to seize his assets as payment, he would claim he is completely broke. Whoever gain him this advice must be a lawyer. So now all he has to do is go live with relatives wait till the police get tired of watching him. The government cannot devote funds to keep tabs on him forever and he can retrieve the cash when the heat dies down. Is a pretty good plan.

26 ( +31 / -5 )

Still not exactly sure what law he broke? The council and bank lost face but, is vengeance on this young man an actual legal criminal option?

10 ( +15 / -5 )

It’s hard to believe that the man spent all of the money on gambling. My bet is that he’s stashed the money in some safe place and will start spending it when the statute of limitations expires.

23 ( +23 / -0 )

A 24-year-old man mistakenly sent 46.3 million yen in COVID-19 relief money by the town he resides in, says he gambled it all away on overseas casino sites, sources close to the matter said Tuesday.

Of all the ways he could have done this, this is probably the most boring and least cinematic.

Maybe he actually transferred it offshore, will accept a nominal punishment and quietly slip away to enjoy the gains once the heat has died down?

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Difficult to believe the continous stream of mistakes done in this case, lots of taxpayer's money lost because city officials apparently feel no responsibility in using it properly and with care.

In a functioning bureaucracy important heads would roll, but I don't believe anybody will get a serious punishment above mere clerks.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Idiot

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

What a waste! 46 million in overseas casinos, spent in his bedroom.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Still not exactly sure what law he broke? The council and bank lost face but, is vengeance on this young man an actual legal criminal option?

Criminally he appears to be in the clear. BUT the municipality is taking it to civil court.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

saying that police had kept his phone following voluntary questioning in April and May.

so yesterday, they said “they couldn’t find him, he skipped town” and today they are saying the police have his phone and have been questioning him for two months?

well…….which is it?

this flawed story keeps getting more and more plot holes as the days go on.

and yet no one is investigating the blunders city hall made?

there’s your real criminals.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

I still am amazed that even after the council realised what happened they still sent him an extra ¥100,000 to make up for their mistake for giving it all to him the first time? That is! I don’t know?, what level of stupidity?

9 ( +12 / -3 )

He has had how long to come up with this story? I would check under his mattress.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

How do you transfer that much money without a trace, without bank records, without credit card records? Did he travel to another country with a suitcase full of cash? If he used a cryptocurrency, how would he purchase it with money from a bank without a record somewhere?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

But he saved some amount to hire a defense lawyer who is also half-anonymous.

Can we verify the transaction records for online casinos?

9 ( +10 / -1 )

My Number system to track cash flows doesn’t seem to be working.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

This loser is definitely a shoe in for the "Freudian Award." Completely stupid on many levels.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

He has it hidden. After a bit of jail time, he will dig it up.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

If he used a cryptocurrency, how would he purchase it with money from a bank without a record somewhere?

You can pay cash for cryptocurrencies if you can find someone willing to exchange them at a rate you both agree with.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

it seems that his happy hour is over now...?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I don't believe the gambling story one bit. The money is stashed somewhere.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Identify him. I'm sure justice will be served by the people of Abu.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

24? Heh. I could live low for ten years and retire at 34. I’d come up with some bs story too. Gamble, dog ate it, whatevs. If only a civil and not criminal why worry? Kid is smart.

If he truly gambled it away, he’s an idiot.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Your taxes. Ask him for a thank you note.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I still am amazed that even after the council realised what happened they still sent him an extra ¥100,000 to make up for their mistake for giving it all to him the first time? That is! I don’t know?, what level of stupidity?

Exactly right mate. This deserves to be made into a movie.

Gambled it all away...?

I call BS , lucky he managed to save just enough for his lawyer fees though.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Thinking about situation of the official who transferred it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

It’s stashed somewhere and I’m sure the police and probably the Yakuza will be following his movements to find out where..respect the guy’s cojones to try to keep it though..

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I need to start a gambling website.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

I find this hard to believe, but wouldn't be surprised if the town swallowed the story whole.

Isn't using such sites illegal in Japan? You would also have to transfer the money overseas, where all kinds of anti-terrorism BS kicks in when you're moving 46 million yen. You'd have to do it in dribs and drabs, giving the town loads of time to step in. I suspect the money will be hidden in cash somewhere in Japan.

(yes, the town and bank are to blame too)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Seems he's totally committed to keeping it at all cost.

It's okay though, since the govt official/s responsible will be paying back the amount

6 ( +6 / -0 )

He seems like BOJ material.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Why isn't his bank saying where and when the money went, all of the transactions on his account are a matter of record and are traceable if transferred to other accounts. The where and when of all his cash withdrawals are on record too.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

if true then he should go to jail. common sense why government paid you 46.3 million yen. without checking and gamble all?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Now, we know he didn't gamble ALL of that money away. He withdrew all of that money and has it stashed somewhere where no-one will ever find it.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Quit his job, closed his bank account, moved out of his house, and now gambled away all the money? Guess he’s living in a cardboard box under a bridge now. Surprised his attorney could keep a straight face with the gambling story. And he must be working pro bono.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

What a loser.

If he thinks no one will go for him.

Isn't worth the hassle during all his life he will undergo for a mere 46 million yen.

My house, which is standard, is worth more.

And whatever you may think, you cannot benefit from an obvious error and claim a BS story to cover. That is called laundering (money was not transfered under legal terms).

The bank of that guy is going to pay too because they are professional.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Looks like a betrayed betrayer…lol And of course it’s not real and fair gambling but only fake at those online casinos. Should have gone to the real tables and small house advantages. Then he could have doubled it, ready to pay back the half, or at least there would have been only a lost of 5% - 15% and everything still fine and manageable for all sides involved.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I doubt he spent all that money on internet casino sites. But that's the official position hes taken and until a criminal investigation is started no one is going to be looking at evidence to back up that claim. Which gives him some time to further move the funds. And buy an airticket.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Police and Prosecutors are silent on this one. So I’m guessing he broke no laws. It’s on the Bank on so many levels and the council. Professional incompetence. Rather then legally theft.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If true then he should go to jail. common sense why government paid you 46.3 million yen. without checking and gamble all?

Pray tell, just what crime did he commit?

Really, think about it, morally speaking, yeah, he should have returned the money or at the minimum contacted the bank for clarification. But then again, he could have taken it all out of the bank, walked to the police station, have them take the cash, as being "lost and found", and collect 10% "finders" fee for returning it.

There would be, legally or otherwise, nothing wrong there either, as he "found" the cash, and was returning it!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I'm sure online gambling is illegal in Japan. As we saw with Ghosn, the police have questionable powers to grab and detain people for "enquiries" when they feel like it. I do not like to recommend this, but the man is refusing to cooperate and is ultimately provoking a response. I bet he could have negotiated keeping a decent chunk of the money, a few free million, by quietly returning the rest. That kind of "wakai" is the norm here.

It is possible that they don't actually want to grab him because the best result for the authorities is for the story to go away as quickly as possible.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This story not going to go away so quickly, BBC ran it, Australian, NZ ran it. Too late it’s global.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

A thief is a thief

https://www.ncconsumer.org/news-articles-eg/using-money-mistakenly-deposited-into-your-account.html#:~:text=Unfortunately%2C%20the%20money%20isn't,can't%20keep%20the%20money.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Pray tell, just what crime did he commit?

Theft. The money wasn't his, he didn't earn it, and he spent it. In Japan, if you find money on the street, you are legally required to turn it in, as you did not earn it. Just because the money was accidentally sent to him, doesn't mean he somehow earned the right to it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Total chancer. Not only was he not even from the town he stole the money from, he moved there to take advantage of the town’s U turn support funds to encourage young people who’ll contribute to the tax base and grow the community.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Perhaps the authorities are using floppy disc technology to investigate his claim whilst trying to contact him by his cell phone they confiscated and announcing he's disappeared only to find the only thing that's missing is the money and their ability to use cognitive thinking.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Theft. The money wasn't his, he didn't earn it, and he spent it. In Japan, if you find money on the street, you are legally required to turn it in, as you did not earn it. Just because the money was accidentally sent to him, doesn't mean he somehow earned the right to it.

He did not steal anything. He was given the money, rightly or wrongly, and he used it. Did you receive any money from the government for COVID? You didnt "earn" it, and if you used it, using your logic here, stole it, from the government.

It wasnt an accident either, and that is why everyone is embarrassed here, as the bank and municipal office are guilty of mismanagement at the least.

That's why there are no criminal proceedings against him!

1 ( +5 / -4 )

If I was mistakenly given ¥46 million I probably wouldn’t have returned it either. However, I’m very sure I wouldn’t have gambled it all away. I would made an international transfer and be on the next flight out of Japan never to return.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

A thief is a thief

Using your link against you! Oh and by the way, that's the US, not Japan! The world doesnt revolve around US laws!

If the money was already spent before this time, you'll still be credited and the person who spent the money will at the very least be responsible for paying it back to the financial institution.

He is not criminally, but civilly responsible, hence the civil suit against him! No crime was committed!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If he committed a crime or there's a crime he could be charged with he would have been charged already.

Or arrested, or both.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

He didn't find the money in the streets, he found it in his mailbox

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Not only was he not even from the town he stole the money from

They gave it to him, he tried to double the money by gambling it. guess he thought if he won big he could give it back and have some left over.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The criminal code of Japan prohibits gambling within Japan ,and it can be illegal to gamble on foreign internet gambling sites from within Japan.

However , if the site is legal in the country where it is based it is difficult for the investigating authorities to collect evidence because they cannot obtain the cooperation of the server administrators.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

So even though he claimed to have spent the money gambling on a foreign site - they cant prove it .

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Anyway could this be a conspiracy? =)

He's not from the place originally. A large sum was "mistakenly" transferred" to his account.

He seems to know exactly what to do.

We're not hearing anything about the culpability of the people who made the "mistake".

Seems the bank personnel is also complicit, transaction was highly irregular yet executed without confirmation.

Long time has passed the govt ofc didn't even check if the funds went to everyone on the list or someone was missed etc etc

2 ( +2 / -0 )

YubaruToday  12:01 pm JST

A thief is a thief

Using your link against you! Oh and by the way, that's the US, not Japan! The world doesnt revolve around US laws!

If the money was already spent before this time, you'll still be credited and the person who spent the money will at the very least be responsible for paying it back to the financial institution.

He is not criminally, but civilly responsible, hence the civil suit against him! No crime was committed!

Was the money transferred by mistake? Yes it was.

Was the money his? No it wasn't.

Whether it's criminal or civil law, the recipient is required by law to return the money. If he can't then civil laws similar to bankruptcy would be in place; if you make any income in the future, a portion of it must go to paying restitution.

Either way, he is legally liable to payback the money cause it doesn't belong to him. He knows it and so do you. If you take something that doesn't belong to you, you're a thief and you stole the money. But we can see that you clearly have no morals.

Whether under criminal or civil jurisdiction; a thief is a thief and apparently so are you.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Japanese police be like: “Let’s take away this dude’s phone so we can tell the media that he is a fugitive because we can’t reach him.”

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I’m more interested in why 420 households can get a COVID present money from my tax money. I get nothing but the pandemic made me unemployed.

how do I apply?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Either way, he is legally liable to payback the money cause it doesn't belong to him. 

Technically, it’s his because they gave it to him, albeit accidentally.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The saga continues. Stay tuned folks.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

justaskingToday  12:26 pm JST

Either way, he is legally liable to payback the money cause it doesn't belong to him. 

Technically, it’s his because they gave it to him, albeit accidentally.

No it's not technically or legally his.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

The government cannot devote funds to keep tabs on him forever and he can retrieve the cash when the heat dies down. Is a pretty good plan.

If there is any government department you do NOT fool around with, it is the tax office. They will be watching him like a hawk until his dying days. You can be sure that his card is marked and any large financial transfer he makes - especially involving credit or property - will be thoroughly audited. The dude can sit on the money all he wants, but as soon as he starts spending it above a certain threshold, the IRS will come down on him like a tonne of bricks.

I am sure if the cops stake him out long enough they will find him at the keiba/keirin/pachinko laundering his money - unless he is really good and has links to criminal organizations who will launder the money for him - for a 95% cut!

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Either way, he is legally liable to payback the money cause it doesn't belong to him. 

Technically, it’s his because they gave it to him, albeit accidentally.

That's the stickling point, assuming it's not his.

I received money too, definitely mine.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

He wasn't entitled to 463 households' money, and so that opens up all kinds of interpretations of both criminal and tax law. I have received various subsidies both as a father and a business owner during Covid, and every single one was clearly indicated with the subsidy name as the payer. He cannot claim he did not know what this money was and could "reasonably" (its a word lawyers use) be expected to notice the error.

Since the law is involved, this could drag on forever, which may be how the man has been advised.

I love pointing this out, but this looks like another example of a nail sticking up but society failing to hammer him down. In Japan, only some nails get hammered, not all of them.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

He wasn't entitled

Maybe.

But as you said law is involved.

He either broke some law or he didn't.

Either case he seems determined to keep the money

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He didn’t steal it, it was given to him by a government body no less. Mistake is their fault as there is no law against it . Might be why so many politicians get away with exactly the same scams. If it was illegal where are the police the prosecutors? It’s nice to see a little man benefit from the system.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

The fact that he hasn't been charged tells me it wasn't actually illegal to keep the money. He'll be fine. It's undoubtedly in cryptocurrency, but the Po-Po will eagerly accept his story so they A) don't have to keep trying to find it which they are utterly untrained to do B) don't have to admit that the Japanese financial system's 'suspicious activity' detection system is nonexistent and C) get to blame it on those dangerous websites in Gaikoku.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Whether under criminal or civil jurisdiction; a thief is a thief and apparently so are you.

You know, when people have to result in making things personal, it just proves their ignorance.

If you understand even 1/10th of what I have written regarding this case here, you wouldn't be making statements like this.

He will have to pay it back, if he loses the civil trial, if it even gets there, as odds are, the municipal office will want to brush this one under the rug as fast as they can. I will be a settlement is reached, if he makes full disclosure.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Isn’t it a bit similar to those many unordered package deliveries from big companies, by error or by bonus campaigns? You can receive them, look at them but you have to wait half a year until it’s your possession and ownership. In the meantime you can stay silent, if you want to really get it, or you can send it back, by error many pay for that, or you can even demand that the company sends someone to take it back or if not, paying the storage costs. There are a few cases, when a people are flooded by such unwanted and unordered parcels, not even knowing where to put it all. That would mean in this case, he could enjoy the big numbers printed in the bank book, but he had to wait some time before withdrawing any single yen he still hasn’t ownership of. Even taking something of it and paying it back before they have realized their errors, that would also be illegal. But after the waiting time it would have been all his money in full amount. Well , such it would be treated in my country, but I don’t know of course the detailed rules for such cases in Japan. They could be similar or quite different, who knows.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Either way, he is legally liable to payback the money cause it doesn't belong to him. 

Technically, it’s his because they gave it to him, albeit accidentally.

No, not even technically as accidentally giving something to someone does not confer ownership, only possession. Legally it's not his money. I'd argue morally it's not either, as he did nothing to deserve this money.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

He either broke some law or he didn't.

He did - theft. In Japan, if you find money and don't turn it in, it's theft. This is the same thing.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The dude can sit on the money all he wants, but as soon as he starts spending it above a certain threshold, the IRS will come down on him like a tonne of bricks.

I guess he's better move to Thailand or somewhere and love beyond the reach of the Japanese tax authorities.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

He didn’t steal it, it was given to him by a government body no less.

This is incorrect. He didn't take the money by force, but once he used money that wasn't his, it becomes theft, because he took it, and used it, when it was someone else's money.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

YubaruToday  01:05 pm JST

Whether under criminal or civil jurisdiction; a thief is a thief and apparently so are you.

You know, when people have to result in making things personal, it just proves their ignorance.

If you understand even 1/10th of what I have written regarding this case here, you wouldn't be making statements like this.

He will have to pay it back, if he loses the civil trial, if it even gets there, as odds are, the municipal office will want to brush this one under the rug as fast as they can. I will be a settlement is reached, if he makes full disclosure.

If you think that the only difference and the main point is criminally or civilly liable, then you're no better than the person who took something that didn't belong to him. Thieves are thieves.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

He was given money.

It's his money, he can do whatever he pleases with it.

The one to blame, the one who must be punished, is the official that made the mistake.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

He is much smarter than the local government!! Perfect cover story. Good luck to him. Nobody was hurt.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Not entirely the man’s fault. The government people made the mistake. But how do you blow nearly $400,000 USD in such a short amount of time? Hope he got some returns on his gambling.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

He did - theft. In Japan, if you find money and don't turn it in, it's theft. This is the same thing.

Woo! I agree with @Strangerland (sniffs strong coffee).

It is indeed potentially a theft, as is the "finders keepers" schoolground reasoning being proffered by some. If you come into credit which was obviously not intended specifically for you, and you decide to keep it, those are potentially purloined funds. The same goes for wads of cash stuffed behind that second hand sofa or any sack of gold you might find at the end of a rainbow.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

And this comes as a surprise to absolutely nobody, the guy was shady from the first report and the people working for the Abu city office are inept beyond comprehension in order to let this happen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

He was given money.

No he wasn't. No one gave it to him.

It's his money, he can do whatever he pleases with it.

It's not his money, it's not his to spend.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

He is much smarter than the local government!! Perfect cover story. Good luck to him. Nobody was hurt.

The taxpayers were. Where do you think this money came from?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

the guy was shady from the first report

It's not like he set out with the intention to steal this money. It metaphorically fell into his lap..

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The man got 463 separate payments listed as "Covid special relief" into his bank account. It was obvious where the money came from and that it was in error.

Even if you had a massive bank balance flash up on an ATM, it is highly unlikely anyone would use the money without first checking it. Use the yakuza's money sent to you by mistake and you will end up in the sea with a concrete block chained to your leg.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

He did - theft. In Japan, if you find money and don't turn it in, it's theft. This is the same thing.

You're just insisting it's the same.

Show the law.

The "find" in this case is not the same as finding a wallet in the street. The money was sent to his mailbox or house

In any case if he indeed committed theft the police would have charged him and didn't let him go

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Isn’t it a bit similar to those many unordered package deliveries from big companies, by error or by bonus campaigns?

Would be a bit similar if delivered to your house with your name on it.

In that case I'm pretty sure you can keep it legally, unless the thing delivered was illegal

0 ( +1 / -1 )

And the laughing ceased.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Isn’t it a bit similar to those many unordered package deliveries from big companies, by error or by bonus campaigns?

quick search says in the US, according to law you are not obligated to pay for or return deliveries you didn't order

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My first thought when I read this was charge the guy for non-payment of taxes.

That way they can at least find out if there's still money left, if there's none maybe jail him for tax evasion.

Occurred to me just now unfortunately since it's covid money it tax free

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Tax evasion, the only crime they could pin on Al Capone.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sayonara 46.3 Million Yen.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Not the guy's fault he was sent the money. Not much they can do, either. This is 100% the fault of the local government. And I'm guessing it was less this guy gambling it away than he was paying gambling debts. Easier to be punished by government (and less interest) than on gambling debt.

Seriously, given how big a mess-up this was by the government, and all the scandals they are involved in with losing money, and nothing is ever done about it, what can they possibly do? The money is gone, of their own doing. Period.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The story that just keeps giving! Hilarious!

Oh well, it's a drop in the ocean really - how much was wasted on Abe-no-masks for example? You could go on forever about how much of our tax yen is frittered away.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

All this is doing is making the town officials, the bank, the police and the Japanese laws look really stupid.

I bet they all wish that they just kept this whole thing secret. Or maybe they tried to do this for 2 weeks then it somehow leaked. And then they wasted another 500,000 yen on lawyers?

Presumably it will promote a review of the systems and the laws.

Whatever happens it looks like the money has gone.

Thief will just go to another town.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

He’s playing with house money…

maybe his thinking was if he wins big he can even return the money back to the local govt and keep the gains…

this story is getting more interesting…

3 ( +3 / -0 )

such a despicable thing to do. show his face and name, justice will be served, what a disgusting human

2 ( +4 / -2 )

If you think that the only difference and the main point is criminally or civilly liable, then you're no better than the person who took something that didn't belong to him. 

What other point is there? Even the municipal office is smart enough to realize that he did nothing criminal, as they consulted lawyers and the police, to the tune of over 4MILLION yen, as they are also attaching those fees to the civil case as well.

People smarter than all the collective here calling him a thief, do not understand that he broke no criminal laws, and calling him a thief, is the same as calling him a criminal.

What he did was morally and ethically wrong, but that is not going to put you in jail. Just because people do something that is morally or ethically "wrong" does not automatically make them a criminal, as you seem to think!

If everyone who has ever done anything morally wrong was tossed in jail, I'd say that most of the folks, including me, would be there with him, and I will bet you as well!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites