FOBTs cause crime. Again

Tell us here about your experiences of people committing crime to fund gambling.
Post Reply
Posts: 132
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:08 pm

FOBTs cause crime. Again

Post by Zero%RTP » Wed Feb 24, 2016 5:44 am

Car dealer pocketed proceeds to fund his gambling addiction

The case was heard at Nottingham Magistrates Court

A used car dealer could face jail after pocketing the proceeds when selling his firm's motors to fund his gambling addiction.

Before he was caught, Steven Armstrong had got rid of three cars owned by the West Bridgford branch of Vertu VW by "falsifying paperwork to cover his tracks," prosecutor Lee Shepherd told Nottingham Magistrates Court.

At the time, the 37-year-old was being threatened by loan sharks and also set up unauthorised credit to help the fraud.

Armstrong pleaded guilty to two offences yesterday and was told the case was so serious it had to go before a crown court judge. Magistrates only have the power to jail people for up to a year.

He sold the cars to motor traders and created "false invoices," said Mr Shepherd. But in January last year, the branch's general manager noticed money was owing on one of the deals.

"He thought one of the invoices was incorrect and asked Armstrong to clarify it. Armstrong came clean and said he disposed of the car to pay something to a loan shark," Mr Shepherd told the court.

Although six cars were involved, two were still on the firm's forecourt and another was traced by police, who interviewed Armstrong, of Butterley Hill, Ripley.

The value of the cars was put at £9,450 with another £5,000 relating to the unauthorised credit, the court heard.

Alex Chapman, mitigating, said: "He developed a gambling addiction following his mother's death and increased pressure of work.

"On the way home, he would stop at the bookies and play the infamous roulette machines. In his own words 'that is a reason and not an excuse'.

"Things spiralled and he came across a person who he thought was offering him help. But that person started to manipulate him. Threats were made against Mr Armstrong when he was asked about his wife and family. They were very specific and he found it terrifying."

He said Armstrong had since received help from Gamblers' Anonymous and has stopped betting. He had a new job in a factory and had never been in trouble before.

Deputy District Judge Richard Marshall told Armstrong: "My view is that the sentence is beyond the reach of this court."

He granted him unconditional bail to appear at Nottingham Crown Court on March 15.

Armstrong pleaded guilty to dishonestly abusing his position as an employee of the firm in the sale of vehicles between November 15, 2014 and May 16 last year; between December 2014 and January last year dishonestly abusing his position with the provision of credit services where no authorisation should have been given.

The firm is part of a nationwide chain with 120 dealerships. A spokesman at its Gateshead head office said: "We will not be commenting on this case at present." ... story.html

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest