Accidental millionaire caught in HK

2011-09-30 22:11

Hong Kong - A New Zealander who went on the run when a bank mistakenly gave him a multimillion-dollar line of credit in 2009 has been arrested in Hong Kong, police said on Friday.

Police stopped Hui "Leo" Gao when tried to cross into Hong Kong from mainland China.

He appeared in court on Friday and was ordered detained until November 28 for possible extradition hearings, though he will be given an opportunity to return voluntarily to New Zealand, police said.

He is wanted there on theft and money laundering charges.

Gao and his then-partner Kara Hurring disappeared in 2009, two days after they received a NZ$10m credit line - 100 times their approved limit.

New Zealand police said NZ$6.78m was transferred out of the man's account, but that the bank recovered nearly half.

They had said earlier they were working with Chinese authorities to track him down.

The pair, who had run a gas station in the scenic tourist destination of Rotorua, were dubbed "the accidental millionaires" when they disappeared.

Hurring has since returned to New Zealand voluntarily to face theft charges. Her lawyer said she denied any involvement. She is due to stand trial in February, New Zealand police said.

  • Snotty - 2011-09-30 22:33


      johnwilliam.roberts - 2011-10-01 00:47

      you just jelous screw the banks they screw the public big time they desere it .

      jabski - 2011-10-01 06:45

      debt is not criminal. what the banks do to put us in debt is criminal. hope they say they had every intention of paying it back and get a court order of a dollar a week over the next .......... years.

  • OZNOB - 2011-09-30 22:43

    don't see why they are in trouble the bank made the mistake

      Warslat - 2011-09-30 23:01

      Doesn't mean they shouldn't be making repayments after all credit is a loan not a gift. Emptying the account and running isn't what honest people do but rather shows criminal intent and knowledge that a mistake had been made. That is why they're in trouble.

      OZNOB - 2011-10-01 00:17

      true what they really should have done was notify the bank of its error and not go on a spending spree and not go absconding with the money now they can contmplate the error of their ways in a prison. there are also some very unhappy people in the bank due to the error

  • Jeff - 2011-10-01 02:28

    Like nobody here would try run with that in there acc.... please do me a favour

      Ixian - 2011-10-01 05:24

      That's just how a short sighted criminal would think.

      Jeff - 2011-10-01 14:50

      Last time i checked giving something by mistake is not a criminal offence

  • Bumblebee - 2011-10-01 06:41

    Mistake or not, if it was an approved loan, then he should not be criminally investigated. Technically, the bank granted him a loan without having checked his ability to repay the loan. In my opinion the bank is on its own here.

  • Libertador - 2011-10-01 09:02

    "God" help those who help themselves.

  • Dirk Hanekom - 2011-10-01 14:28

    Ag, the African National Circus does it all the time with our money and don't have to face a jail term.

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