Roulette Hacking Scam Nets It Workers £33,000March 15, 2010 9:54 am
A pair of IT contractors managed to steal £33,000 from Gala casinos over a 3 month period in 2007, in what has become the first case involving the misuse of computer technology within the UK gaming industry.
Certain casinos allow punters to place online bets at their roulette tables via remote betting terminals, with the winners receiving a printed ticket that can be exchanged for cash. Andrew Ashley, 30, and Nimesh Bhagat, 31 used their knowledge of tech systems to infiltrate the software which controlled the remote betting machines and issue themselves a number of false winning betting slips up to £600 a time.
However, the duo eventually slipped up after printing themselves a £600 winning betting slip from a ten pound 35-1 roulette bet. The school boy mathematical error alerted the attention of the casino, which then launched an investigation leading straight back to Ashley and Bhagat.
Having then seized home computers from Ashley, of Catford, and Bhagat, of Balham, the Scotland Yard clubs and vice unit discovered video and audio footage placing the men at the precise locations when the offences occured, between July 2007 and September 2007.
Commenting on the incident, Detective Inspector Ann-Marie Waller said: ”The £33,000 might easily have rolled into hundreds of thousands. These men not only used their intimate knowledge of two complex systems to break the law and make these fraudulent claims; they also breached the trust of their employers and any semblance of professional integrity.”
After admitting their guilt the men, who had been employed as IT problem analysts analysts for a British casino group, were ordered by a Croydon Crown Court to carry out 200 hours of community service and pay back £16,000 each. They also received a 12 month suspended jail sentence.