$1M Gambling Fraud Mastermind Lands Prison Sentence

Posted on: September 11, 2023, 07:05h. 

Last updated on: September 11, 2023, 03:39h.

Peter Holbrook, a 75-year-old Brit, appeared in court today for a sentencing hearing after being accused of stealing around £849,000 (US$1.06 million) from multiple individuals.

The entrance to the Bradford Crown Court in the UK
The entrance to the Bradford Crown Court in the UK. A financial consultant who stole from clients for his gambling habit will head to jail. (Image: Alamy)

On Friday afternoon, a courtroom filled with victims and their families gathered to hear the harrowing account of Holbrook’s offenses.

Holbrook, an alleged financial consultant and estate planner, targeted vulnerable elderly individuals. Under the scheme, Holbrook convinced individuals to invest their money with him. In exchange, he claimed he would help the victims write their wills. He then used the victim’s life savings to support his gambling addiction.

One victim, age 86, who lost £384,000 (US$486,806) from her late husband’s estate, suffered immense hardship due to Holbrook’s actions. She died earlier this year.

During the hearing, Holbrook’s lawyer argued that he was essentially a good person with a strong moral compass despite his ten-year-long hustle. Despite the potential maximum sentence of 10 years, the judge imposed a five-year and three-month sentence.

No information is available regarding parole eligibility.

Holbrook Blames Victims

Holbrooke initially denied any wrongdoing. During an initial interrogation, he played on sympathies by claiming he couldn’t transfer money to clients because he was grieving the loss of his daughter to cancer. However, investigators later learned that his daughter was alive and well.

In a second interrogation, Holbrook attempted to shift blame onto the victims’ families, claiming they were out to get him. He finally confessed to his guilt during a third interrogation.

Holbrook was able to continue his con by forging friendships with the victims. However, several of his victims eventually reported him to the police, leading to his eventual arrest.