VIP Gambler Sues a London Casino, Wants His Bonus Back
November 12th, 2020 2.00pm
One high roller has filed a lawsuit against a London casino, claiming he ways promises a hefty incentive bonus, which he didn’t get in the end.
Croatian Juste Puharic wagered £27 million on roulette tables in the exclusive Park Lane Club casino, situated in the capital’s Mayfair district.
Now, Puharic is hoping to resolve the matter in court, stating the casino promised him a VIP incentive bonus of 0.9%.
The story begins back in 2015 when Puharic spent five days playing at the exclusive private members casino. The gambling session got him £1.5 million, but he never received a penny from the 0.9% commission on his bet of more than £27 million. That’s a total of £243,518.
In the lawsuit, filed in London’s High Court, Puharic said he had made a massive risk by wagering such a staggering amount of money only because he had expected a handsome cashback. According to his lawyers, the cash “contractually” belonged to him.
However, the Park Lane Club casino denies that any incentive bonus had been offered to Puharic. Commenting on the matter, the casino stated it wasn’t interested in Puharic’s claims, and even added it didn’t even care whether he played there or not.
A Bad Timing
The lawsuit couldn’t have arrived at a worse moment for Silverbond Enterprises, the owner of the Park Lane Club, as it comes less than a week after the UK Gambling Commission revoked the casino’s license.
The country’s gambling watchdog stated the license had been revoked due to a change of corporate control. In other words, the casino lost its license because it was unclear who was its owner.
It’s widely believed that Silverbond Enterprises is owned by the controversial businessman Vasilijis Melniks. Melniks, who is a Latvian national, has been charged with laundering of £49.1 million from an energy company in Ukraine.
However, public records indicate that Melinks resigned from his position at Silverbond Enterprises more than two years ago, soon after a Ukrainian Court froze all of his assets in this Eastern European country. It was this move that alerted the UKGC to start a review of the casino’s license.
After leaving the company and its board, he was replaced by Italian banker Ricardo Tattoni. However, the UKGC stated the matter of the ownership of the casino hadn’t been resolved.
The gambling regulator explained that the funds used to obtain and support the casino’s license at the time the of the switch had come from an unknown source. According to the UKGC, there is no clear information who’ll receive any future profits made by the licensee.
This isn’t the first time that the Park Lane Club comes under regulator’s scrutiny. Back in 2018, the casino was issued a hefty £1.8 million for failing to adhere to anti-money laundering rules imposed by the gambling watchdog.
Another mystery in this story, apart from Melniks, is the man who filed a lawsuit against the Park Lane Club, Juste Puharic.
News articles originating from his home country, state Puharic is a renowned gambler, who made a name for himself thanks to serious roulette wins. He used his money to invest in real estate and various other business endeavours.
At this moment, he is involved in another legal case over the ownership of several luxurious cars worth more than £5 million.
Puharic claims he paid £5,000 every month to keep his classic Rolls Royces and Mercedes Benzes in the parking of the Grosvenor House Hotel, another establishment located in Park Lane, Mayfair. They were later removed from the lot, without any previous notice.
That’s not the only court case that involves the Croatian gambler