Man pockets almost $800,000 mistakenly deposited to his account
ST JAMES, Jamaica — A man has been accused of pocketing almost $800,000 that his employer inadvertently deposited to his account, and then walking off the job.
Ricardo Augustos, who was a driver at a trucking company, is facing a charge of simple larceny.
He was denied bail when he appeared in the St James Parish Court on Wednesday.
According to court documents, on July 14 the owner of the company, mistakenly transferred $795,000 to the accused man’s account as part of payroll.
Another transfer with his actual salary was made the same day around 2:17 pm.
When the company realised the error Augustos was contacted and asked to return the amount of the initial transfer, but he never did, and he never showed up for work again.
Subsequent calls to him proved futile.
The matter was reported to the Area One Fraud Squad and he was arrested and charged.
“Mr Augustos, where is the money?” Presiding Judge Sasha-Marie Smith-Ashley asked on Wednesday.
“At the time they contacted me I already start using the money,” the accused man replied.
“When will you have that money to pay over to the people?” the judge then asked, but Augustos did not respond. He did, however, tell the judge that there was a gap in the time the funds were deposited to his account and the time when his employers contacted him.
The judge then told Augustos that the honest approach would be to meet with his former employer and work out a payment plan.
She then asked him if he had any relatives who could assist him as she was not going to grant him bail. He replied, “No.”
Smith-Ashley then ordered a social enquiry report and postponed sentencing until September 26. She offered the accused some advice.
“Mr Augustos, it will go a long way in your favour if these persons are compensated for their loss,” the judge said before remanding him in police custody.