Family becomes 10 times richer than Richard Branson after £43 billion bank mistake

Joe Harker

Published 
| Last updated 

Family becomes 10 times richer than Richard Branson after £43 billion bank mistake

Featured Image Credit: Fox11/Shutterstock

One lucky family briefly ended up 10 times richer than Richard Branson after their bank mistakenly gave them $50 billion (£43 billion).

The James family from Baton Rouge, Louisiana thought they'd hit the jackpot when a mistake at their bank catapulted them to fame.

It briefly made them the 25th richest people in the world and gave them a fortune 10 times the size of that belonging to Virgin billionaire Richard Branson.

At first they thought the family fortune could have come from an incredibly wealthy but previously unknown relative, but the idea that some billionaire uncle had popped his clogs and made them super-rich quickly turned out to be a pipe dream.

Darren James did the right thing and gave the $50 billion back to the bank after the mistake. Credit: Fox11
Darren James did the right thing and gave the $50 billion back to the bank after the mistake. Credit: Fox11

They soon figured out that the whole thing had been a mistake and the money didn't belong to them.

Sadly for them, and fortunately for whoever made the massive monetary mix-up, the family weren't able to keep the money and gave it back in an attempt to fix the error.

Darren James, a real estate agent, explained that his wife called him full of panic and excitement after checking her account and seeing that $50 billion had been deposited there.

James, who used to work as a law enforcement officer, knew keeping money that wasn't theirs would be seen as theft and got in touch with the bank to tell them a serious error had been made.

Even so, they were briefly able to enjoy the feeling of being one of the richest families in the world with tens of billions of dollars in the bank.

Darren said he enjoyed the feeling, but hoped that his actions would encourage others in a similar situation to do the right thing.

Darren and his family decided to fix the mistake from Chase bank and give the $50 billion back. Credit: PA Images
Darren and his family decided to fix the mistake from Chase bank and give the $50 billion back. Credit: PA Images

He said: "It was a great feeling while it was there to see that many zeroes in your account. It was pretty neat to see what it looked like."

Giving the money back turned out to be the right decision, as trying to spend money that's accidentally been given to you when you know it's not really yours can land you in trouble.

One woman who suddenly got sent $1.2 million after an accounting error was arrested after she moved it to another account before using the money to buy a new car and house.

Authorities were alerted to the problem after the bank realised their mistake and tried to reclaim the wrongly sent funds, only to be hit with the response that the money wasn't in her account any more.

Detectives were able to recover a majority of the money which hadn't already been spent.

So, anyone who ends up mysteriously having a much bigger bank balance than before should beware making the massive mistake of spending it.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

Topics: News, US News, Money, Crime

Joe Harker
More like this

Chosen for YouChosen for You

News

Woman took DNA test and became linked to 36-year unsolved murder case

35 minutes ago

Most Read StoriesMost Read

Woman who married man who bullied her in high school says he's a changed man

a day ago