Chinese man sets up fake bank branch

Chinese man sets up fake bank branch

China is well known for its fakes, with 20% of consumer products in the Chinese market counterfeit. But it's not just Apple phones and designer handbags that are being copied, bank branches appear fair game too as one of the country's biggest banks sees its brand hijacked by a bogus high street outlet.

A Chinese farmer, bearing the same surname as the recently departed president of China Construction Bank, Jianguo Zhang, decided to set up his own branch of the bank after having an application to open an account turned down.

He ran the fake bank - complete with card readers, passbooks and three tellers -  for one month before a woman who deposited $6,200 was unable to withdraw funds from a real branch.

According to Lanling County police spokesman Mr Song, the man employed his teenage daughter and two of her classmates as tellers.

In a televised interview Mr Zhang said that he applied to join CCB but he wasn't approved. He explains,"'I just wanted to open a bank... I didn't think that much about it."

Mr Zhang's bank wasn't as successful as the Nanjing fake last year, which scammed its customers out of $32 million. The rural cooperative appeared to customers to be state-owned with uniformed clerks, yet it had no accreditations to operate as a bank.

Mr Zhang says he has returned the deposits that his bank had taken.

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