Four men in the UK are facing prison time for defrauding bookmakers out of more than $800,000 (£600,000). The men, who are aged between 33 and 59 years old, face sentences from nine months to four years in prison. The group was active from July 2020 until June 2021.
Four Men Used Laminated Bills, Defraud Bookmakers of $886K
Ladbrokes and Coral was the operator that became a victim of the group. Overall, the operator was defrauded out of a total of $885,930 (£663,556). To accumulate that amount, the men completed a total of 168 separate transactions. Upon investigating, the police discovered that the men were active across London, Surrey, West Midlands, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Merseyside and Yorkshire.
The scheme was completed by using laminated £20 and £50 bills tied to a plastic string. The men would visit a self-service betting kiosk and deposit the bill. Then, once the deposit is registered into the system, they would pull the string and recollect the bill. Police authorities launched an investigation after multiple employees of the bookmakers all around the UK reported thousands of pounds of missing revenue. The crimes were investigated by Met’s Specialist Crime Command.
Each of the Group Members Received a Prison Sentence
According to Met Police, the group was sentenced on November 22 after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud. The men were sentenced at Kingston Crown Court. Paul Hubbold, 59, of Barrow-in-Furness was sentenced to 9 months in prison, suspended for 18 months. Another group member, Michael Sadgove-Tarrant, 37 of Portsmouth received a 1-year prison sentence, suspended for 2 years.
On the other hand, Charlie Shaw, 33, of Portsmouth was sentenced to 2 years in prison. Last but not least, Thomas Wheatcroft, 40, of Portsmouth received a 4-years and 3 months prison sentence. Besides a prison sentence, each of the group members received a lifetime ban from any bookmakers.
Clothes, Caps Helped Identify the Group
It was back in June when Shaw, Sadgove-Tarrant and Wheatcroft were arrested. As a part of the investigation, police found bags of clothes and baseball caps. Upon comparing the found clothing to CCTV, police found that the robbers have been using the same clothing.
“The substantial sums of money stolen by the group is a significant loss to the businesses these men had targeted.”Detective Constable Kevin Parley
Kevin Parley, the detective in charge of the case acknowledged that the group has stolen quite a lot of money. He outlined the investigation against the four men was conducted in collaboration with security officers from the company. The collaboration aimed at gathering evidence to “bring forward a robust case against the four men,” explained Parley.