One man is facing possible jail time after he allegedly spent tens of thousands of dollars that Wells Fargo accidentally deposited into his account.
Joseph Bucci woke up one day to find $70,000 in his Wells Fargo bank account, which previously had about $35 dollars, Phillyburbs.com reports. Police allege Bucci knew the money wasn’t his, but went on a monthlong spending spree anyway; now, he’s facing felony charges and seven to 14 years in jail.
An internal Wells Fargo investigation found that a teller at one of the bank’s branches accidentally typed Bucci’s account number, depositing $69,300 in checks in March that was intended for another account, according to Phillyburbs.com.
So what exactly did Bucci buy with all of that magic money? A four-month old golden retriever, a trip to Florida and a used car among other things, CBS News reports.
"I knew it was going to catch up to me… just didn’t know it was going to be this bad," Bucci told CBS.
Bucci isn’t the first customer to wake up to a surprise boost to a bank account balance. New Zealand resident Kara Hurring was found guilty of fraud, theft and money laundering earlier this month after she transferred millions of New Zealand dollars accidentally deposited into her partner’s account into other accounts before moving to China. Dubbed the "accidental millionaire," Hurring is set to be sentenced in August.
One savvy German man, known as "Michael H" was actually able to benefit from money that his bank mistakenly put in his account and unlike Hurring and Bucci, he isn’t facing criminal charges. After Comdirect accidentally dumped 200 million euros into his account, Michael moved some of the money into his account at a different bank, according to British personal finance site Thisismoney.co.uk. Though Comdirect withdrew the erroneous deposit, a court ruled that the man can keep the 12,000 euros in interest that he earned while the cash was sitting in his account.
Check out some even bigger bank fails below:
JPMorgan Chase Loses $2 Billion
On May 10th, the U.S.'s largest bank JPMorgan Chase announced one of its London trading desks had lost <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/10/jpmorgan-chase-london-whale_n_1507662.html?ref=business" target="_hplink">$2 billion on bad bets on credit derivatives</a>.
UBS Trader Loses $2 Billion
Kweku Adoboli, a trader for Swiss bank UBS, lost <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/15/ubs-traders_n_963715.html" target="_hplink">$2 billion on unauthorized trades in September 2011</a>.
MF Global Collapse
Brokerage firm <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/31/mf-global-to-file-for-bankruptcy_n_1066902.html" target="_hplink">MF Global filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy</a> in October 2011 after a failed $6 billion bet on European debt.
Rogue Societe General Trader Loses $6 Billion
Hailed as "history's biggest rogue trading scandal" at the time, French trader Jerome Kerviel was convicted in October 2010 of <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/05/jerome-kerviel-rogue-fren_n_750464.html" target="_hplink">losing French bank Societe General around $6 billion</a> due to unauthorized trades.
Bear Sterns Bought By JPMorgan Chase
After a run on investment bank Bear Sterns nearly caused its collapse in 2007, JPMorgan bought the firm for $2 a share the following March, <a href="http://www.businessweek.com/bwdaily/dnflash/content/mar2008/db20080316_356646.htm" target="_hplink">Businessweek</a> reports.
AIG Largest Single Bailout
Insurance company AIG became the recipient of the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/08/aig-bailout-realize-15-billion-profit-taxpaers-gao_n_1498645.html" target="_hplink">largest ever government bailout for a single corporation</a> when a $182 billion rescue package saved it from a liquidity crisis following a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/08/aig-bailout-realize-15-billion-profit-taxpaers-gao_n_1498645.html" target="_hplink">downgrade of its credit rating</a> in 2008.
Washington Mutual Bankruptcy
One of the biggest players in retail banking and mortgages during the housing crisis, Washington Mutual filed for Chapter 11 in September 2008, after sustaining losses on billions of dollars worth of mortgage and home loans, <a href="http://www.cnbc.com/id/46793926/WaMu_Emerges_From_Bankruptcy_Protection" target="_hplink">CNBC</a> reports.
Citigroup came to the brink of collapse after it reported losses around $10 billion in 2007, in part due to failed mortgage investments, <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2008/01/15/news/companies/citigroup_earnings/index.htm" target="_hplink">CNNMoney</a> reported. To keep the bank afloat the government issued <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/11/23/feds-consider-plan-to-res_n_145856.html" target="_hplink">a $20 billion bailout in November of that year</a>.
Merill Lynch Shocks Investors With Big Loss
After projecting a $4.5 billion loss during the third quarter of 2007, Merrill Lynch shocked investors by reporting a $7.9 billion deficit from trading mortgage-backed securities and other structured products, <a href="http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2007/11/26/101232838/" target="_hplink">according to CNNMoney</a>.
Barings Bank Collapse
One time star trader Nick Leeson was responsible for sinking British bank Barings after losing $1 billion when an an earthquake struck Kobe, Japan in 1995, causing his investments in the Nikkei to fail as the Japanese stock exchange crashed, <a href="http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1937349_1937350_1937488,00.html" target="_hplink">TIME reported</a>.