Man Must Pay Back $1.5M Withdrawn From Casino ATMs
DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – It’s payback time for a Michigan man who authorities say got more than $1.5 million from ATMs at three Detroit casinos in 2009 because of a computer glitch.
On Wednesday, a federal judge in Detroit sentenced Ronald Page, a 56-year-old retired Flint autoworker, to 15 months in prison and ordered him to repay Bank of America from his $2,000-a-month pension.
Page reportedly burned through the money playing blackjack over a two-week span.
Page said he’s “completely apologetic.” He earlier pleaded guilty to theft of bank funds.
Federal prosecutors say Page discovered he could use his debit card to withdraw unlimited amounts, but the bank caught on. They say Page withdrew amounts ranging from about $52,000 to $515,000 over 14 days.
By the time Bank of America realized what was going on, authorities say Page had withdrawn more than $1,543,100.
Defense lawyer Richard Morgan Jr. wrote in court documents Page is a recovering alcoholic and drug addict who got hooked on gambling. Morgan said the incident was “like giving a junkie crack cocaine.”
Morgan said Page gambled for a 24- to 36-hour stretch without sleep, The Detroit Free Press reported. After resting, Page allegedly returned to the table and continued to gamble.
Although Page won significant amounts during the 14-day blitz, Morgan said his client eventually lost all of it to the casinos.
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