A student has been charged with fraud after she allegedly blew £2.4m her bank gave her by mistake on handbags and other luxury items.

Christine Jiaxin Lee, 21, reportedly splashed out on a high-end apartment rental and designer goods after her Australian bank gave her an unlimited overdraft on her savings account.

When her lawyer laid out the details of her spending to Sydney’s Waverley Local Court, magistrate Lisa Stapleton said: “That’s a lot of handbags.”

Police arrested the Malaysian chemical engineering student as she tried to board a flight to her home country on Wednesday night.

Australia handbag fraud

Ms Lee gave her address as an apartment overlooking Sydney Harbour

They said she had been charged with dishonestly obtaining a financial advantage by deception and knowingly dealing with the proceeds of crime.

They said in a statement: “Police will allege the woman obtained an illegal financial advantage when she overdrew her account by Aus$4.6m.”

Australia handbag fraud

Ms Lee’s boyfriend said he only learned of the spending on Thursday

Ms Lee, who has been released on bail, allegedly spent the money between July 2014 and April 2015, and some Aus$3.3 million (£1.7m) has reportedly not been recovered.

Stapleton questioned whether the cash could be considered a “proceed of crime”, saying “it’s money we all dream about”.

Ms Lee’s boyfriend of 18 months Vincent King told reporters he had been unaware she had access to such huge sums of money when he arrived at the court.

The case has been adjourned until June 21.