In February of 2014, Safa Abdulla Al Geabury, a known property tycoon, visited the Ritz Club and used a check to cover a £2 million gambling spree. After spending the night gambling at the Ritz, Al Geabury was on his way the very next day. The casino then tried to cash his check, which bounced. The gambler is now trying to have the debt written off, stating the casino staff should have known he was a gambling addict and not allowed him to hand over the check for gaming.
Al Geabury is currently involved in a lawsuit filed by the Ritz Hotel Casino Ltd, the owner of the Ritz Club for the £2 million debt as well as £200,000 in accumulated interest since February of last year. Al Geabury is claiming he is not responsible for the money because he had a gambling addiction at the time of the incident.
Court papers indicate that Al Geabury has been a member of the Ritz Club since August 2012 and a judge stated during a review of the case in pre-trial court that the main factor of the case is whether the defendant had a gambling addiction and if the claimant knew of the addiction.
A full hearing is scheduled for the end of the month with psychiatric reports currently in the works to examine the conduct of Al Geabury the night of the incident as well as to look into the strength of the defense in the case.
The Ritz is no stranger to lawsuits when it comes to unpaid casino money. The group has fought additional patrons in the past, such as Nora Al-Daher, who tried to sue the casino in 2012 for monies she lost during gambling. Al-Daher was seeking repayment of £2 million saying she should never have been given the credit by the casino. This case was denied last year with the judge ruling that Al-Daher had ‘unimaginable wealth’ and could stand the loss.