Man sues gambling firm over 'unfair' refusal to pay out £1.7 million jackpot

Video report by ITV News Correspondent Sejal Karia

Andrew Green thought his world had changed after winning a £1.7 million jackpot in an online casino, that is until the betting firm refused to pay out.

Now the 53-year-old is suing bookmakers Betfred who claimed his win had been a "defect in the game" and refused to hand over the money.

Mr Green, from Lincolnshire, says he felt as though he had been "robbed" after missing out on the winnings back in 2018.

He said: "I gambled on the chance I was going to hit the jackpot, to get it and then to be refused it is just so unfair."

Mr Green at the High Court hearing on Friday. Credit: PA

At a hearing at the High Court in London on Friday, Mr Green's lawyers asked Mrs Justice Foster to either rule in his favour or strike out Betfred’s defence to his claim.

If successful the process will avoid the need for a costly trial.

But lawyers for Betfred, which is contesting the case, argued the dispute should be resolved at a full trial.

Credit: PA

Speaking outside court after the hearing, Mr Green said: "I’m hoping I win, not just for myself, but for everybody, so this can’t happen to anybody else and they don’t have to go through the two-and-a-half to three years of what I’ve gone through."

He said the news that he would not receive the money was "devastating", adding: "These big companies feel they are above the law and above the general public, the person in the street.

"Somebody has got to win at some point."

Mr Green hit the jackpot on a game called Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven Blackjack in January 2018 though an online platform hosted by Betfred, according to court documents.

Having won £1,722,923.54 by the time he stopped playing, he tried to withdraw it - but his withdrawal was declined.

Betfred's lawyers say the bookmaker is not liable to pay because the game contained a "defect" which, they say, made it more likely to pay out higher sums in winnings than intended.

The firm argues the game's terms and conditions - agreed to by way of Mr Green ticking a box on the website - stated it would not be liable in the event of "system errors".

Betfred also contends that the game's rules stated "pays and plays" would be void in the event of a malfunction.

Mr Green's lawyer, James Couser, argued that, in order to comply with the Consumer Rights Act, the relevant terms should have been "prominently displayed, rather than tucked away on page 13 of a long, repetitive, and frankly tedious electronic document".

He described the clause on liability as "manifestly unfair" and should be disregarded.

Mrs Justice Foster will give her ruling at a later date.