Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 December 2014

Bookies stung as ‘classic’ gambling coup pays off

It was an astonishing gamble that went off like clockwork.

A fleet of drivers were deployed to lay bets at more than 100 different bookies in an elaborate betting coup in the Republic that landed up to €200,000 (£165,659).

The masterminds won the six-figure sum by paying a massive team to each back the winning horse with small stakes of €200 (£165) each, at long odds of as much as 14/1.

And last night the Irish Bookmakers Association reluctantly saluted the audacious gamble, admitting: “It's a classic. They did nothing illegal.”

Businessman Douglas Taylor, the joint-owner of the horse at the centre of the plan, is understood to have reaped a share of the rewards.

Mr Taylor is managing director of recruitment company MCR, which is understood to have been involved in bringing together the people power to pull off the plan.

Up to 200 agency workers arrived at betting shops at 6.55pm on Monday evening, when an alarm on a watch sounded the signal to place the bets on D Four Dave.

They were given strict instructions to be at the counter before the alarm went off. They were told to tell staff they would take the odds available, which were as high as 14/1 before later falling to 5/1.

If big money had been laid on the horse earlier in the day then the bookies would immediately have become wary and slashed odds on the horse.

But instead the gamble was landed in style, as drivers were dispatched by to more than 100 bookmakers in counties Dublin and Kildare.

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