A former Darwin casino employee and his brother-in-law are facing possible jail time for fraudulently claiming a Keno ticket worth $53,000.

The pair pleaded guilty to one count each of obtaining benefit by deception in Darwin Local Court last week.

The court heard that in September last year a casino regular handed Michael Tomas five 8-spot tickets. Discovering one of them was worth $53,353.60, Mr Tomas swapped the ticket with a losing one from under the counter and led the rightful winner to believe he hadn’t won.

Casino employees are banned from gambling at SKYCITY and playing Keno in the Northern Territory, so Mr Tomas gave the winning ticket to his brother-in-law, Jonathan De Guzman, and drove him to the casino the next day.

Mr De Guzman cashed in the ticket as his own and received a $40,000 cheque and the remaining winnings in cash.

The deception came undone when another casino employee found the ticket with De Guzman’s license attached. The staffer remembered selling the ticket to the real winner and recognised De Guzman as his colleague’s brother-in-law.

Security footage showed Mr Tomas taking the ticket when a colleague wasn’t watching and NT Police later found the money in Mr De Guzman’s account.

The court heard Mr Tomas had worked at the casino for 15 years and his actions were a “gross breach of trust”.

The men are facing seven years’ imprisonment and were remanded in custody until sentencing in February.


Sources: NT News, 9news, ABC