Ladbrokes Under Fire Over Australian Problem Gambler Issue
Ladbrokes is facing severe backlash over a problem gambler from Australia that was supposedly groomed by them and defrauded his employer for millions that he used for gambling.
Ladbrokes is a well-known gambling operator that has found itself in a bit of a pickle. The company has been accused of grooming a gambler from Australia, who ended up defrauding his employer and stealing millions to gamble. The company is being sued for A$5.1 million for its role in the consumers actions. The problem gambler stole over A$3 million to fund his addiction.
The player in question is Jaicome Spinella. He worked at Bauen Concrete, a concreting firm based in Melbourne. He took the A$3.1 million in funds from the company and used it to fund his betting account at Ladbrokes.
The action in itself should been caught by Ladbrokes because Spinella added the money within a seven month time frame, from December 2016 to July 2017. Spinella was the only person responsible for the finances of the concrete company, so he was easily able to take the funds until he got caught. He rane the company with a friend as well as his brother.
To bet with company funds, Spinella used the company credit card. He added funds 571 different times. It was not until the middle of 2017 that he admitted to his actions. Liquidators were called in to the company and around 50 employees were fired due to the finance issue.
Spinella reportedly worked with police as well as the liquidators and the ASIC, admitting that he took the money and it harmed the company in the long-run. This week, Spinella pled guilty to being dishonest. He moved from Bauen to Brisbane and was found to have a dependency on alcohol and a gambling disorder.
He appeared in court to state his case and will not remain in custody until he is sentenced at the end of the week.
Ladbrokes Role in the Crime
In connection with the fraudulent activity, Ladbrokes now faces the hefty lawsuit calling for A$5.1 million in payment. The lawsuit calls out the gambling company on its failure to prevent Spinella from using company funds and they are said to have helped him with his gambling addiction.
Nadia Kaddeche, the attorney for Spinella said in court on Monday that internal emails within Ladbrokes have staff members talking about Spinella and his gambling activity. The letters reportedly talk about gamblers as bad as him only come along once in a lifetime and they have to make sure they keep him at the site.
According to Judge Michael Cahill, the emails sound like Ladbrokes had groomed Spinella and there is some level of interference by the company if not exploitation by the brand. Kaddeche said that the gambling activity of her client escalated as he was trying to win back the money that he had lost. His addition became too much for him.
Spinella is now facing jail time for his actions in using the company money to gamble. A prison sentence is basically inevitable due to the amount of money Spinella took from the company and used for his own gain.
But what role does Ladbrokes play in this situation. Are they at fault? The emails are almost a smoking gun, showing that the employees knew there was some type of problem and nothing was done to stop Spinella from spending more money at the site.
What will happen to Ladbrokes in the case it faces? Will they have to pay the large sum of money? Will they face regulatory backlash over the issue? Only time will tell how this case will play out and what Ladbrokes will face once the case is decided.