Betfred Customer Seeking £2 Million Summary Judgment Over Malfunctioning Jackpot

Posted on: October 9, 2020, 07:30h. 

Last updated on: October 9, 2020, 08:09h.

A former Betfred customer who says he won £1.7 million ($2.2 million) playing a progressive jackpot game at the British bookie’s online casino will have his day in court.

Betfred Andrew Green
Andrew Green says life has been “horrendous” since he hit the phantom jackpot at Betfred. (Image: BBC)

Andrew Green, 53, says he thought all his Christmases had come at once when he appeared to hit the jackpot on Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven Blackjack while playing on his cell phone.

The Lincolnshire, UK man extended his overdraft and spent £2,500 celebrating, only to be contacted by the company four days later to be told the game had suffered a software malfunction and “no legitimate jackpot win occurred.”

Next week, the UK’s High Court will hear what Green’s lawyer, Peter Coyle, says could be a landmark case, because it’s the first time that Betfred’s terms and conditions have been held up to judicial scrutiny.

Green is seeking a summary judgment awarding him $2 million to cover interests and court costs.

No Evidence from Betfred

“I could not believe what I had won,” Green told The Daily Mirror. “I phoned Betfred and even got them to read back to me the final figure and that’s when they first congratulated me.

“I am a single parent. I’ve had four heart attacks and received heart treatment 11 times, and all of a sudden, I thought my life was going to be a lot better,” he continued.

It’s been horrendous. There’s been times when I wished I had not even won the money,” he added.

Betfred contests that he didn’t win the money. But the operator has failed to provide evidence of the game’s alleged malfunction because it’s licensed from software giant Playtech, which supplies the same game to numerous online casinos.

Betfred does not have evidence of the glitch and says it has no contractual entitlement to ask Playtech to provide it.

All Pays and Plays

Recent cases in which gamblers have sued operators over slot malfunctions have not gone well for the gamblers, and generally speaking, a malfunction voids all pays and plays.

But Coyle thinks this one may be different, although he acknowledges the legal strategy is risky.

An application for summary judgement is a high-risk strategy, because we have to satisfy the judge that Betfred has no chance at all of defending its position at a full trial,” he told The Mirror.

“To do that, we have to accept Betfred’s case as it’s been presented to the court; namely that the blackjack game malfunctioned in some way.

“While Betfred’s betting terms and conditions are incredibly complicated and span across numerous different documents, we are confident that, on their proper construction, the terms simply don’t allow for Betfred to withhold payment when the alleged glitch is within Playtech’s game and not Betfred’s own software.”

Green was offered a £60,000 settlement from Betfred with a non-disclosure agreement, but he turned it down.