Mr Green Wins £1.7m Court Case With Betfred
A Betfred customer has successfully won his court case against the operator who refused to pay out a £1.7m jackpot. The bookmaker had claimed a “defect” in the game had voided the win and had refused to pay.
Andrew Green is today celebrating becoming a millionaire after winning a three-and-a-half-year court battle with Betfred.
The 54-year-old had thought he had won over £1.7m after playing an online slots game and received congratulations messages for five days from the bookmaker. However, when Green tried to withdraw his winnings, Betfred refused, claiming a glitch in the game meant he wasn’t entitled to the jackpot.
The company had previously offered Mr Green £20,000, a figure representing just over 1% of the winnings, increasing the offer to £30,000 before legal proceedings took place.
Yesterday a judge agreed with Mr Green and ordered the company to pay his £1,722,923.54 winnings, plus interest, and ruled that the company’s terms and conditions for the Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven Blackjack game were “just not apt to cover the circumstances of this case at all”.
Green revealed that he felt “robbed” by the bookmaker’s decision, and in a statement, he gave after the verdict; he said: “The last three years have felt like hell on earth. I think Betfred have treated me abysmally, but it’s not about Betfred today – I’m just ecstatic to have eventually won my case.
“Along with my family, I have been through some very low times and become very down. My physical health has also suffered badly, and I sometimes wished I’d never won this money because it was just making my life a misery.
“But today, I feel like the world has been lifted off my shoulders, and I feel so incredibly happy and relieved – for me, my family and my legal team. The champagne can finally come off ice and be savoured.”
Mr Green encouraged other punters who had fallen foul of operator’s terms and conditions to take further action and said his victory proved that it is possible to get justice. Adding: “This is not just a win for me, but a win for everybody in a similar position,” he said. “I did nothing wrong, I played a game, I was congratulated for five days on being a millionaire, and then it was snatched away from me.”
Lawyers for Mr Green had asked the sitting judge, Mrs Justice Foster, to either rule in their client’s favour or strike out Betfred’s defence to his claim. In contrast, lawyers for the bookmaker argued that the case should go to full trial.
Mrs Foster ruled in Green’s favour and stated: “I am of the clear view that these clauses in the terms and conditions are inadequate to exempt Betfred from the obligation to pay out on an ostensibly winning bet or series of bets.”
A spokeperson for Betfred said: “Mr Green won the jackpot three times whilst playing a game provided by one of our third-party suppliers. The supplier reported a software problem to us and advised that we should withhold payment. However, we will abide by the court’s decision and not appeal. We would like to apologise to Mr Green for the delay in receiving his money.”
Betfred has previously been criticised for withholding funds from customers. The bookmaker purchased the customer list of now-defunct online operator MoPlay and had promised to honour existing balances that MoPlay’s customers had in their accounts.
The Guardian report that many customers had not received their funds, despite Betfred’s promises.