Euromillions winner scammed Sunderland victims via Snapchat to fund gambling addiction

Reece Casey, 31, used Snapchat to steal from the victims in June - some of which were family friends, Newcastle Crown Court heard. Credit: NCJ MEDIA.

A scammer who advertised he could get a 40% reduction at Flannels went on to defraud 25 people out of a total of £34,000.

Newcastle Crown Court heard he told his victims he could get a 40% discount at Flannels as he had a friend who worked at the luxury clothing company.

On Tuesday 1 November, Casey, of Maughan Street, Dudley, West Midlands, appeared at the court to be sentenced for fraud, after he pleaded guilty to the single charge at previous hearing.

The court heard in 2018 Casey had won £54,000 from betting firm William Hill, before going on to pocket £164,000 a year later on the EuroMillions.

Katie Spence, prosecuting, said: "A friend of the defendant responded to the offer and ordered multiple items. He also ordered items for other friends and family."

Ms Spence added that those who had been defrauded had sent their money to Casey.

The court heard that one woman sent £4,500 to Casey, with another woman buying items using an inheritance she received from her mum who had died. Another woman lost money after buying items for her husband's birthday.Kelly Sherif, mitigating, said Casey had shown "extreme remorse" and said he was unaware there were so many victims as he had only dealt with three personally.

She said he had an "entrenched lifestyle of gambling", which he started when he was 15.

Ms Sherif added: "In 2018, he won £58,000 from William Hill and in 2019 won £164,000 on the EuroMillions, and he squandered that money on betting.

"At that time, he realised his gambling addiction was extremely bad and he put several blocks in place to exclude himself from gambling."

She said that despite barring himself from betting sites, he still managed to use a betting company via WhatsApp and began gambling again.

The court heard that that, in August last year, he went into rehab for treatment and still remains there, before adding he has "no intention to return to this lifestyle and has no intention to get back to gambling".

Judge Stephen Earl adjourned sentencing until Friday 18 November so more information could be provided to the court regarding the offences.

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