February 10, 2015

Slow count fraudster avoids jail

A ‘slow count’ fraudster has avoided jail despite costing bookmaker Ladbrokes an estimated £10,000 across an 18 month period.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard how John O’Connor conned staff at 14 branches of Ladbrokes over 18 months from July 2012. Among the tactics used by O’Connor was the placing of a bet near to the off, then using a variety of distraction techniques to confuse the cashier staff to see if the bet had any chance of winning. If it did then he would pay for the bet and pick up the winnings, if it didn’t he would simply leave the premises without paying for the bet.

O’Connor was charged with 15 counts of a fraud by misrepresentation, to which he pleaded guilty in November. He has been sentenced to 18 months in prison, suspended for two years, for 16 counts of fraud. He was also given a 12-month supervision order and a four-month alcohol treatment order.

O’Connor carried out his crimes at branches in Hillingdon, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets, Newham, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth and Westminster, plus other locations around the country. He even carried out the same offence in Birmingham while awaiting sentence on bail.

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