Malaysian tycoon sues London casino after losing RM22m

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Malaysian tycoon Lim Han Joeh has filed a counter-suit against a London casino for £3.9 million (RM21.9 million) he lost in a card game in 2015.

The businessman contended that private members’ club Aspinalls did not fulfil its legal duty to stop him from losing more in the gambling session which took place in 2015.

According to court papers, Lim, said to own properties in Malaysia and London, was said to have played the card game double chance baccarat with “limited breaks” for 72 hours.

The Daily Mail reported that Lim, who is said to be worth £40 million with business interests in property, steel and computer chip manufacturing, joined the casino in 2014 and was allowed to cash cheques up to the value of £600,000.

After losing that sum, Aspinalls was said to have increased Lim’s credit to £1.9 million and then allowed him another £2 million in credit, which he also lost.

The exclusive gambling club had sued Lim in court to reclaim the money he had lost but had not settled. The casino won the case.

The High Court judge also ruled that Lim was in contempt of court for breaching four court orders, and fined him over RM560,000.

In his counter-suit, Lim is claiming that any debts or loans should be null and void because Aspinalls breached its duty under the Gambling Act 2005, which states that “vulnerable people should be protected from being harmed or exploited by gambling”.

In his court writ, Lim contended that Aspinalls did not compel him to stop playing but instead increased his limit before a further line of credit, which he also lost.

He claimed the casino took advantage of his “distressed attempts to claw back the losses by allowing further funds and more time to gamble”.

Aspinalls said it was seeking to strike out the claim.

Lim was the executive director at Yinson Holdings Berhad from 1996 to 2016. He was later redesignated as a non-independent non-executive director.

He is the brother of Lim Han Weng, who founded the company.