December 9, 2022

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Paddy Power punter blew £3k celebrating £286k win on horse racing bet before winnings taken back over ‘mistake’


A PADDY Power punter who blew £3k while celebrating his £286k win has had his winnings taken back by the bookies over a “mistake” two days later. 

James Longley is suing the popular book makers for “welshing on the bet” after he cashed in on a horse race. 

Mr Longley is taking the bookie to court over the winnings


Mr Longley is taking the bookie to court over the winningsCredit: Champion News
Paddy Power refused to pay out on the £286k winnings


Paddy Power refused to pay out on the £286k winnings

The 44-year-old was ecstatic and spent £3,000 celebrating after his £13,000 each-way 16-1 bet ‘Redemptive’ romped home at Wolverhampton in September 2019.

Mr Longley had initially asked to stake £1,300 each way but was so confident that he accepted the Paddy Power offer that was ten times bigger – placing £26,000 on the horse. 

However two days after the massive win, Paddy Power demanded the winnings back  on the basis that he never intended to place such a large bet.

The company said the bet was a “mistake” and so it was entitled to adjust it and instead pay out only £28,600, in line with the lower stake.

They claimed that he had only intended to place a £1,300 each way bet, at a total of £2,600, which would have resulted in him winning £28,600. 

Self-made multimillionaire Mr Longley, of Market Harborough, Leicestershire, has now gone to the High Court in London, where he is suing Paddy Power for his full winnings.

He placed the £26k placepot, won £286,000 on his bet, but was left with £28,600 after the bookies refused to fully pay out – ending up £257,400 down. 

A High Court Judge will make a ruling on the issue at a later date


A High Court Judge will make a ruling on the issue at a later dateCredit: The Sun

The former RAF serviceman who made his fortune when he sold his utility bills company Utility Bidder in 2018, has asked the court for the difference between his £286k winnings and the £28,600 he ended up with, as well as interest. 

Mrs Justice Ellenbogen at the High Court heard he had already lost around £19,000 that day when he decided to back ‘Redemptive’, calling a Paddy Power dial-a-bet operator to place a total £2,600 bet.

The Malta-based operator had to seek authority for the stake due to its size, but mistakenly relayed it to an authorising trader as £13,000 each way – a total stake of £26,000.

The bet was approved and, after the horse won, his account was initially credited with the full £286,000 winnings. 

But his barrister, Mark James, claimed that the Paddy Power trader who approved the bet had quickly regretted his decision. 

In an exchange with his leadership team soon after the race, Dublin-based trader Aidan McCarthy said he had “massively overlaid” a bet.


James Longley had already lost around £19,000 that day when he decided to back ‘Redemptive’.

He called a Paddy Power dial-a-bet operator to place a total £2,600, but the trader relayed it as £13,000 each way – a total of £26,000.

When the horse came in a winner, Mr Longely’s account was credited £286,400.


But the bookies quickly rescinded the offer, saying he was only entitled to the £2,600 bet – bringing his winnings down to £28,600.

He was left £257,400 out of pocket by the decision.

He said he had looked at Mr Longley’s bets that day and that it seemed he was “chasing” his losses and decided to accept the £26,000 stake.

“I can only apologise for this massive error on my part and I can’t explain why the liability didn’t register with me,” the trader had written.

By the Monday after the Saturday race, the trader had clawed back the cash to “cover his own back,” the barrister claimed.

 Mr James played the court a recording of the phone call between Mr Longley and the operator, which begins with Mr Longley attempting to place a £1,300 each way bet.

In the call, the operator can be heard telling Mr Longley she has cleared the bet with a trader, to which he replies “lovely” and she carries on: “alright so that will be £26,000 coming from James Longley,” to which he responds “yeah, that’s it”.

Mr James said Mr Longley was fully aware that the operator had taken £26,000 from him, as he checked his account via the Paddy Power app before the race started.

“At that point he knew he had staked £13,000 each way on ‘Redemptive’ at 16-1,” said Mr James, arguing that Paddy Power had contractually “accepted his bet”.

Mr Longley has accused the bookies of "welshing" on the bet


Mr Longley has accused the bookies of “welshing” on the betCredit: Champion News

Giving evidence, Mr Longley, said he had been happy to stake £26,000 on the horse.

“This was obviously a significantly bigger bet than I had asked for, but I was very confident that Redemptive would at least place in the race and so struck the bet,” he said.

But Paddy Power barrister Kajetan Wandowicz argued that, although the trader had approved the bigger stake, there had been a “mistake” in the relaying of Mr Longley’s actual intention.

His intention all along had been to place a bet with a stake totalling £2,600, he told the judge.

“Paddy Power reserves the right to correct any obvious errors,” he added.

He said the company had the right to “adjust the bet” under its terms and conditions due to the phone operator’s mistake in relaying the higher stake to the trader. 

But Mr James said: “There was, as a matter of fact, no mistake here. Mr McCarthy intended to authorise acceptance of a bet of £13,000 each way.

“And the claimant did understand the defendant to be prepared to accept ‘a significantly bigger bet than I had asked for’.”

Speaking outside court, Mr Longley – who says he “bets for fun” – said he had been “excited” at the rush of having staked £26,000 on a single horse.

The bookie – listed as PBB Entertainment Ltd in court papers – did not call Mr McCarthy to give evidence.

The judge has reserved her judgment on the case until a later date.

It comes after a gambler who won £1.7million in a High Court battle after Betfred refused to pay up has been dished out an extra £600,000 in interest.

Andrew Green, 54, scooped a huge jackpot while playing Blackjack on the bookmaker’s online casino – but Betfred didn’t cough up as they claimed there had been a “software glitch”.

Mr Green battled for more than three years to get the money he was owed.

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