Dozens of Austrians received US coronavirus stimulus checks


Dozens of Austrian citizens have received $1,200 coronavirus stimulus checks from the US government, according to a report.

At least 100 of the checks were recently deposited at two different banks in the country, Austria’s public broadcaster ORF reported Monday.

One of the recipients, 73-year-old retiree Manfred Barnreiter, of Linz, was puzzled when he opened his mailbox to find a check from the US Treasury signed by President Trump — and initially believed it was a scam.

He “thought it’s pretty interesting — let’s bring it to the bank,” he told ORT, and got the money three days after cashing the check.

Barnreiter said he didn’t know why he qualified for the payment meant to help Americans amid the coronavirus pandemic.

But he believes it’s because he worked as a waiter in New Jersey for a few years in the 1960s, and as a result receives a small pension from the US.

However, he said his wife also got the stimulus check, despite her never having even traveled to the US.

Neither are US citizens or live here, which is required to be eligible for the payments.

Bank managers in Austria said it’s likely the checks were sent overseas by mistake. Some of the recipients had been US taxpayers at one point, including a couple of former au-pairs who previously lived in the US.


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