Woman sentenced to 30 months in jail for Bingo theft

inner30months10042015We can’t stress this enough. If you think you have a Bingo addiction, or any addiction for that matter, please seek professional assistance. There are all sorts of organizations that can help.

In fact, if you think you’re addicted to Bingo, let us know. We’ll set up some deposit and time limits on your account to make sure you’re not getting in over your head.

That’s advice Jacqueline Ballam, a trusted finance officer at Pembroke College, wished she had taken. The mother of two has been sentenced to 30 months in jail for stealing nearly £300,000 pounds from her employer to fund or £6 million gambling addiction.

If you’re American, we’re talking about stealing $439,000 to fund an $8.7 million addiction. Keep in mind, she actually only deposited £324,425 of her own money (we use the term “only” very loosely). She was able to snowball the cash into big wins, but the accumulated losses and eventual bets dropped her down.

The accused was in charge of paying suppliers who provided the college with goods and services. Over the course of 18 months, she created duplicates of 77 invoices and made payments on those invoices. Except instead of paying each company a second time, she funneled the money to her own account.

During an audit back in January 2014, the college discovered that they had paid out £285,986.18 in extra cash. Once the discovery was made, the authorities were called in. They did their thing and, well, here we are.

Ballam definitely deserves to spend the time in jail for stealing all that money, but we can’t help but feel sorry for her. There weren’t any fancy cards in her driveway. She didn’t take any expensive vacations. The money wasn’t hidden away. Instead, it was all spent on gambling because of an addiction that she couldn’t control.

Stories like this make us sad, but the also are a bit shocking. At 123BingoOnline.com, we have systems in place to make sure people aren’t gambling more money than they can afford. We’re a bit disappointed that the UK online bingo site she was playing at didn’t have the same systems in place, but we hope this will serve as a lesson moving forward.