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A builder was shocked to discover a massive bag of cash hiding in the walls of a property he was working on – but it ended up being a curse, not a blessing.
US-based labourer Bob Kitts was working on a property near Lake Erie, Cleveland, when he discovered £150,000 tucked away in a wall.
Two lock boxes suspended by a wire behind a cabinet contained envelopes with a return address to P. Dunne News Agency.
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According to the New York Times, Kitts said in a deposition in a lawsuit filed by Mr Dunne’s estate: "I ripped the corner off of one.
"I saw a 50 and got a little dizzy.”
As he looked around he found a cardboard box with £26,000 as well as envelopes containing £124,000.
Kitts was doing work on the house on behalf of Amanda Reece, who laid claim to the cash and offered her contractor 10%.
He however reckoned that 40% would be a fairer sum, and here the problems started.
The money, all in 1920’s marked bills, were also later claimed by the Dunne estate, which involved 21 heirs to the cash.
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But by the time it got around to such legal nitty gritty, much of the money was already gone, with Ms Reece jetting off on holiday.
She testified she spent £11,000 on a trip away with her mum to island paradise Hawaii and that £47,000 was stollen from her.
Despite never reporting the issue to the police, she says the money had been stashed in a shoebox in her wardrobe.
She also claims she sold some of the antique currency to coin collectors.
Kitts then said that Reece accused him of stealing the money, with the mood surrounding the whole magic find turning sour in the blink of an eye.
The issue was solved after the courts got involved. Reece dropped her claim on the remaining £20,000 and 13.7% went to Kitts.
What was left over was dished out to the 21 heirs of the Dunne estate.
Gid Marcinkevicius, a lawyer who represented the Dunne estate, said: “I called it the greed case.
"If these two individuals had sat down and resolved their disputes and divided the money, the heirs would have had no knowledge of it.
"Because they were not able to sit down and divide it in a rational way, they both lost."
Kitts claims he was portrayed as greedy and lost business in the area as a result, the Sun reports.
“I was not the bad guy that everybody made me out to be," he said.
"I didn’t do anything wrong. It was a neat experience, something that won't happen again.
"In that regard, it was pretty fascinating; seeing that amount of money in front of you was breathtaking.”
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