Gambler tried to hold up bookmaker with note on his betting slip

Pavel Lokhovinin


Thomas O’Brien was homeless and, after placing two losing bets at Ladbrokes in Dewsbury town centre with his remaining £1.50, he turned to crime. He took up his next betting slip which had written on it: “This is a robbery, I am armed just give me the money.”

The prosecutor said when the manager read the note and looked up at O’Brien, a customer added: “I am serious.” Unfortunately for him the manager took one look at the small frame of the would-be robber and decided he could defend himself if necessary, picked up the phone and called the police.

O’Brien’s representative said that Thomas had a gambling problem for the last 41 years and had been living rough for the previous two weeks before the offence. “He was hungry, homeless and suffering from hypothermia. He wanted to do something to be arrested so he could spend the night in the cells”. Previously, O’Brien admitted attempted robbery and was jailed for six months.

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