By ELOISE WALTON
IT’S GOING to be a brighter Christmas for British resident Steven Newton and his family after his bank credited his account with 10,000 euros, which had been stolen when his new bank card went missing.
Steven applied for a bank card for his savings account at Crédito Agricola in October. “I asked them to send the card and pin to my company address, but they sent it to my home address. This is when the problems started because the card and pin never arrived,” he told The Resident.
It was only when Steven contacted the bank to ask why it was taking so long for his card to arrive that he realised something was wrong.
“The bank confirmed that the card had been sent to my home address. With the post box down a lane, it’s not a very secure place to have mail delivered to,” he said.
When he tried to withdraw money from the account at the bank, he realised it had been emptied.
“All the money my wife and I saved over the summer from our kayak business, which was supposed to tide us over the winter months, was gone.”
By checking his bank statement, Steven found that an item costing around 1,300 euros was bought from a popular electronics shop. With this information, Steven went straight to the shop and asked a member of staff if they had any information about the purchase.
“I was lucky that the shop assistant who was there was the same person who had sold the item, a flat screen television,” he said. “I went straight to the police with the evidence that I gathered at the shop.” A GNR spokesman told The Resident: “We are aware of the case and are investigating.”
With the prospect of a bleak Christmas, things did not look good for the family. Then, on Friday, December 12, the bank manager telephoned Steven to say that the 10,000 euros had been restored to his account.
“The manager said that this was unusual and the banks normally wait for the police investigation to be concluded before returning any money,” said a delighted Steven.
“I’m going to go out and buy my children’s Christmas presents.”
A spokesman from the Crédito Agricola told The Resident: “Each case is treated individually, but there have been cases in the past where cards and pin codes are stolen before they are received by the client.
“In these cases, when we have evidence that clients have no responsibility, their accounts are credited by the bank with the full amount stolen.”
The spokesman said that every bank has an emergency telephone line, with English speaking operators, for clients to call in case of stolen cards or other problems.
For more information about what to do in the event of card theft, please contact your local bank branch.
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