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Last Updated: Thursday, 30 October, 2003, 13:12 GMT
Spend it like Beckham
David Beckham has run up a 400,000 hotel bill in less than three months, according to reports.

BECKS' BIG BILL
Accommodation: 80,300
Guests: 77,000
Sundries*: 178,440
Parking: 18,000
Restaurant: 54,285
Room service: 18,000
Bar: 6,850
TOTAL: 432,875
*Inc Romeo's 1st birthday party

The England captain is said to have been spending cash like it's going out of fashion during his stay at Madrid's swanky Santa Maura.

Becks checked into the five-star hotel - formerly a palace - back in August, after joining Real Madrid.

Since then, according to The Sun, he has racked up more than 80,000 on accommodation and over 50,000 in the restaurant.

His running total, which includes son Romeo's first birthday party, is reported to have topped 400,000.

Not surprisingly, staff at Santa Maura can't get enough of the midfield superstar.

One contact told the paper: "David is without doubt our favourite guest.

"We are used to powerful people but he has been a real pleasure. He is always polite and friendly and has signed autographs for guests and staff."

He might not be quite so cheerful when he finally gets around to signing the cheque.


Cash register
Bet you can't spend it all

Oops, flutter fingers

A bank manager has earned the dubious title of world's worst punter, after blowing 8m of stolen money on dodgy bets.

West Aussie Kim Faithfull transferred more than 150,000 a week from the Commonwealth Bank's computer into an online gambling account and then proceeded to work his way through it.

Faithfull, who was jailed for five years for theft, was described as "your classic mug punter" by a former employee of IASBet Darwin - the firm who took on the wagers.

"He bet on up to 20 races on a Saturday," the worker said.

"He'd put a lot of money on no-hopers at long odds, sometimes two in the same race. On the card, they had no chance - but what if he'd fluked and won? He'd have cleaned us out."

Faithfull, 36, had bets of up to 30,000 on each race, but Lady Luck was rarely on his side.

Amazingly, the fraud was never detected, but he eventually gave himself up.

"He just kept feeding it in and burning it up," the former employee added - "but then it wasn't his money, was it?"

Makes Beckham's extravagances look like a ten bob wager on the Grand National.



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