Betfred: Man to sue Lancashire headquartered firm over refusal to pay £1.7 million jackpot

A MAN suing a betting firm over its refusal to pay a £1.7 million jackpot he won in an online casino has said hopes to win his case so others do not share his experience.

Andrew Green, 53, from Lincolnshire, said he felt as though he had been “robbed” when Betfred told him it would not pay out following his win in 2018 because of a “defect” in the game.

The betting shop chain, which was founded in Salford and currently headquartered in Warrington, has branches in The Mall Blackburn, New Wellington Street, Whalley Road and St James Street, along with outlets on Broadway and Blackburn Road in Accrington, Market Street in Colne, Manchester Road in Nelson and Bank Street in Rawtenstall.

Mr Green is bringing legal action against the firm at the High Court in London, where he attended a hearing in a bid to resolve the case, while avoiding the need for a trial, on Friday.

During the hearing, Mr Green’s lawyers asked Mrs Justice Foster to either rule in his favour or strike out Betfred’s defence to his claim.

But lawyers for Betfred, which is contesting the case, argued the dispute should be resolved at a full trial.

Speaking outside court after the hearing, Mr Green said: “I’m hoping I win, not just for myself, but for everybody, so this can’t happen to anybody else and they don’t have to go through the two-and-a-half to three years of what I’ve gone through.

He said the news that he would not receive the money was “devastating.”

He said: “I gambled on the chance I was going to hit the jackpot, to get it and then to be refused it is just so unfair.

“These big companies feel they are above the law and above the general public, the person in the street. Somebody has got to win at some point.”

Mr Green played the game, called Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven Blackjack, in January 2018 on an online platform hosted by Betfred, according to court documents.

Having won £1,722,923.54 by the time he stopped playing, he tried to withdraw it – but his withdrawal was declined.

Betfred’s lawyers say the bookmaker is not liable to pay because the game contained a “defect” which made it more likely to pay out higher sums in winnings than intended.

The firm argues the game’s terms and conditions – agreed to by way of Mr Green ticking a box on the website – stated it would not be liable in the event of “system errors”.

Betfred also contends that the game’s rules stated “pays and plays” would be void in the event of a malfunction.

However, James Couser, for Mr Green, said that, in order to comply with the Consumer Rights Act, the relevant terms should have been “prominently displayed, rather than tucked away on page 13 of a long, repetitive, and frankly tedious electronic document”.

He added that the clause on liability was “manifestly unfair” and should be disregarded.

Mrs Justice Foster will give her ruling at a later date.

The Westmorland Gazette | North Lancs