Merlaku receives £1m after being denied €43m Slots Jackpot
Last year we reported how a slots player named Behar Merlaku seemingly won a €43 million jackpot, only to find out that it was due to a “software error.” Merlaku was devastated after being told by Casino Bregenz that he didn’t really win and suffered severe psychological problems as a result.
The 26-year-old never truly believed that his win was simply the result of a software glitch as he told reporters, “They took me for a fool which I am not. I’ve played in many casinos and I know the way the cookie crumbles. It doesn’t concern me if they have a software problem.”
Adding to the drama was an insulting offer from Bregenz, which included a £60 reimbursement on Merlaku’s play along with a free meal. Seeing as how some free slots spins and a meal pale in comparison to €43 million, Behar took the case to court and sought £5 million in damages.
His argument was that the Austrian casino should have let independent auditors check the machine to verify a software glitch, rather than just doing it in-house. Furthermore, he said that local police should have been involved more – which they were not. Merlaku was also drawing the sympathy card by saying that his wife was stressed out and gave birth to a child with a cleft palate.
As for Bregenz’s stance on the matter, spokesman Martin Himmelbauer explained the matter by saying, “We wanted to apologize but he did not want to co-operate. We offered to pay out the cash that he did win, but he refused to accept it.” He added, “Usually these matters are sorted out with a meal for two but in this case the man was not prepared to settle for anything less than the full payment.”
In the end, Behar Merlaku received a lot more than a meal for two since Bregenz Casino settled out of court with him for £1 million. The first thing that he plans to do with the huge settlement is pay for his child’s cleft palate surgery.