It seemed like a miracle to Xu Ting of Guangzhou: a misplaced decimal point somewhere in the bowels of an ATM meant that his $140 withdrawal debited his account only 14 cents. Over several hours he made another 170 transactions, pocketing more than $24,000. But after getting robbed and buying lottery tickets, he ended up in court—where he was sentenced to life imprisonment for bank robbery, writes the Los Angeles Times.
Xu's harsh sentence has led to uncommon public outcry that has netted him a retrial. An Internet survey revealed that 93% of respondents would have taken the money. Many feel that the judiciary favors banks, despite frequent overcharges and widespread counterfeit bills. "Never let a bank suffer a cent of loss, otherwise it will sue you," complained one observer. "If you're lucky, you'll go bankrupt, if not, beheaded."