Vice Squad
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
The Delicate Treatment Afforded a Big Gambler

If someone owes you, oh, 2 million pounds, you might consider pressing him for payment in less than six years time. Or maybe not. What if he continued to come by and patronise your business regularly, in a manner that was highly profitable to you? In that case, you might not want to put him off by getting a court involved in that little matter of debt collection.

Welcome to the world of "blue whales," the planet's most prolific gamblers. Over a span of a dozen years, the blue whale in question had lost 23 million pounds in the London club where he owed the 2 million pounds. He eventually tried not to pay, arguing that the club's behavior amounted to offering him credit, which British gambling clubs cannot do. So far, this legal gamble has not panned out, either. The Guardian has the story.

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