Jail time for Austrian who tried to fool police
The Local · 25 Apr 2016, 12:23
Published: 25 Apr 2016 12:23 GMT+02:00
The man identified only as Friedrich T., 41, had contacted police after news of the money was made public in December.
He had claimed that he worked as a security guard at a supermarket, and was supposed to bring the money to a bank. But as he walked over a bridge a gust of wind had allegedly ripped the plastic bag out of his hand, scattering the money in the wind.
The man had even hired top local lawyer Herbert Eichenseder to represent him in recovering the money but the court found him guilty of fraud and drug offences and sentenced him to 15 months, three of which he must service behind bars and 12 months of which have been suspended.
So far police have still not traced the original owner of the money, which is good news for the students who did find it as under Austrian law they can expect to receive a 10 percent finder’s fee even if the real owner comes forward.
Three students had been spotted swimming for the money and police were called by passers-by who were worried about their activities in the ice-cold water.
When the soggy bills were handed in to police, officers then used clothes dryers to dry them out, prompting jokes about money laundering.
Earlier reports in Austria said officers had first believed the money, which consisted of €100 and €500 notes, was counterfeit but they later changed her mind and announced that it was genuine after an expert report.
Story by The Local Austria/Central European News