When an Australian man was pulled over by police, they clearly had no idea what can of worms they were opening.
Phillip Johnathan Harrison, a bricklayer and carpenter, was driving a high-end sports car when police pulled him over. Inside, they found 12 grams of ice (a methamphetamine), Viagra and ecstasy, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).
But that wasn’t where the story got weird.
The 29-year-old Gold Coast native told police that he was worth $12 billion and later told his lawyer the government had supplied him with the Audi sports car.
Public defender Nick Hanly said Harrison told him that he had netted the money over the past year but couldn’t say where it had come from.
“He said he wasn’t at liberty to say,” Hanly told the court at Harrison’s bail hearing. “At this point, I was considering getting mental health to come in.”
Harrison then allowed Hanly access to his bank accounts which showed a cash balance of $596 million (AUD) and a real estate portfolio of $1.56 billion, according to the Australian.
If it were true, Harrison would be one of the 50 richest people in Australia.
“I would not have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes,” Hanly told the court.
Harrison was granted bail at the hearing, and afterwards, he refuted his lawyer’s claims over how much property he owned.
“My lawyer was delusional, I told him not to say it, duty solicitor not very good,” he said to ABC.
“I just have to have a bit of a think about what the hell’s gone on here. A lot of wrong has been done here, that’s for sure.”
“I didn’t lie about that. It’s $1.2 million in land, the rest in shares, ASX. I own the ASX 200, I’m in control of it,” Harrison said. The ASX 200 is an Australian stock exchange.
Harrison said he had no idea whether the bank totals were correct.
“It’s the banks that do all the adding up, I don’t really know,” he said.
Harrison denied that he made his money as a drug dealer but rather, he made it on stocks.
“How would I make billions in drugs without being caught? My investments, my ideas in cars, apps, trade, I sold them overseas, have been for years,” Harrison said.