A bookies worker is facing jail over a Back to the Future style gambling scam that netted him more than £40,000.
Gavin Thomson found a glitch in Coral’s computer system that allowed him to place bets after events had finished.
He gave friends and punters cash to go into their branches in Dundee and Forfar to put on coupons on sporting events that he knew the results to – guaranteeing him a winner.
The fraud echoes the plot of classic sci-fi movie Back to the Future II, where Marty McFly’s nemesis Biff Tannen travels back in time with sports results from events that had already finished to place bets and make himself rich.
Thomson was told he faces jail after admitting the £40,300 fraud carried out over less than three months.
Dundee Sheriff Court heard he was raking in up to £1,000 per shift by running the con.
Fiscal depute Saima Rasheed said Thomson was a manager’s assistant at the Forfar and Dundee Coral branches when he carried out the scam.
She said: “In the summer of 2015 the accused learned that a glitch in the system enabled him to allow late bets placed by customers.
“He began to ask customers and friends to place bets in the Dundee and Forfar stores on his behalf and he would provide them with stake money.
“In January 2016 a regional risk assessor with Coral carried out an audit of payout made at the Forfar branch.
“It was discovered there was a problem with the computer system which allowed bets to be retrospectively placed for events that have passed, by changing the sport type when inputting the bet on to the system.”
The depute said the assessor discovered 64 bets placed after events took place that had been processed by the accused in Forfar.
The total loss at the branch was £17,500.
The assessor learned Thomson also worked at Dundee and discovered he had processed 55 bets placed after events had taken place.
The total loss in the city branch amounted to £22,800.
Thomson was suspended in January 2016 and interviewed by police on January 27.
“He said he didn’t realise it had got so bad,” said the depute.
“He stated there was a glitch and he was going through a bad period of gambling and found it an easy way to get money back.
“He said when he found the glitch he used it to his advantage.
“He said he involved customers and replied that it was to cover his tracks.
“He said his gambling problem started with fruit machines and got bad when his daughter was born and got out of control and he spent all of his wages.
“He stated he spent all the money he obtained in gambling machines and casinos.
“He was informed that he was sometimes going away with around £1,000 per shift.”
Thomson, 27, of Viewmount, Forfar, pleaded guilty on indictment to two charges of fraud committed between October 2015 and January 2016.
Defence solicitor Sarah Russo said the father-of-one was a “genuine first offender”.
Sheriff Alastair Carmichael deferred sentence until September for social work background reports and released Thomson on bail meantime.