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Casino wins legal fight with gambling addict

By John Aston

The Ritz casino has won a High Court battle to recover £1m in unpaid cheques from a wealthy gambling addict.

The "high end" casino in London's Piccadilly took legal action against Mrs Noora Abdullah Mahawish Al-Daher – known to western acquaintances as "Nora" – after she gambled and lost £2m on the evening of April 3, 2012.

Mrs Al-Daher, whose husband is the foreign minister of Oman, argued that the Ritz's claim against her could not succeed because it was based on "illegality" and the unlawful giving of credit.

She also asserted that the casino had been "under a duty of care" towards her as its staff knew she was a gambling addict or problem gambler and should have restrained her from betting.

But High Court deputy judge Seys Llewellyn QC ruled there was no legal authority that supported her case and gave judgment to the casino "in the sum of £1m, as claimed", plus interest. He rejected her counter-claim to recover the £1m of her debt she had paid in December 2012.

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