Stoke-on-Trent scammer claims £1.3k betting win after man made 'simple' mistake

David 'DJ' Gardiner with his betting slip
-Credit: (Image: (Image: SWNS))


An army veteran was left gutted after his £1,300 winnings from the Snooker World Championship final were swiped by a Stoke-on-Trent-based fraudster following a celebratory post on Facebook.

David 'DJ' Gardiner, 65, had confidently placed £100 on Kyren Wilson to take the title at odds of 12/1 and was over the moon when Wilson triumphed over Jak Jones on May 6. However, his elation turned to shock when he discovered that his prize money had already been collected from a Coral bookmakers branch in the Potteries, astonishingly, 100 miles away from his home.

DJ, from Kettering, Northants, recalled the sinking feeling he experienced upon realising his mistake, remembering how he had shared a snap of his betting slip on the World Snooker Tour Facebook page.

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It's suspected that a crafty scammer captured the image of the slip and used the barcode to claim the winnings in Stoke-on-Trent, reports the Express.

A rueful DJ said: "I was mortified but it's my own fault. I just didn't think. It was probably just the excitement getting to me knowing he was about to make the final. I posted it when he on the brink of winning his semi-final."

DJ, a fervent snooker enthusiast who once ran a snooker hall in London, explained his support for Wilson, saying, "I'm a big snooker fan, I owned a snooker hall in London years ago, and I Kyren is a home town lad so I was excited he could win his first world championship."

Reflecting on the incident, DJ expressed his regret: "I was kicking myself but it's not something I knew fraudsters had the capability of doing without having the actual slip itself. I just want to warn others out there."

He concluded with a cautionary note: "Everyone is posting pictures of their bets on Facebook so people need to be aware this can be done. Anybody on a phone could take a picture over someone's shoulder and then scan that it's got to be a loophole in security."

DJ revealed that when he went to collect his winnings, a staff member at the store informed him that the betting slip had already been cashed out at a Coral branch in Stoke. The staff called the store and were told that CCTV footage showed a man scanning a slip, placing a £200 bet from it and withdrawing the remaining £1,100.

Adding to his frustration, DJ said he was informed that the winnings were claimed at 8.33am - less than half an hour before he arrived to collect them himself. DJ suspects that the offender enhanced the image because its barcode wouldn't scan properly when staff tried it at the Kettering branch.

He commented: "He was a clever so and so and must have been tech-savvy. He clearly knew what he was doing and must have known how the systems work."

"The irony is that had Kyren won earlier in the evening I'd have gone and cashed it out straight away." I'm totally gutted but there's nothing I can do about it now - it's just gut-wrenching."

DJ had to abandon his limousine business when he became his father's carer four years ago. His father passed away just before Christmas and DJ said he was hoping to use the winnings to help prepare his father's house for sale.

He asked Coral to pay the bet out given the circumstances as a gesture of goodwill, but they declined. DJ added: "I find that disgraceful from a company making millions of pounds."

The frustrated punter explained: "I thought when I explained the situation they might give me the money I won fair and square. They have given my winnings to somebody else."

A representative from Entain, the parent company of Coral, advised: "In order to prevent this kind of fraud from happening, we urge customers to keep their betting slips safe and to not share with them anyone else either in person or online until they have been safely cashed in at one of our shops."

Action Fraud has also been notified about the incident. Pauline Smith, the head of Action Fraud, said: "It has been recorded on our system as an information report.

"An information report can be made when a fraud has not been committed or there is suspicion of criminal intent. An information report is also made if somebody is reporting fraud on behalf of a victim or a person is the victim of identity theft."

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