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A convicted fraudster who served jail timeĀ  was the mastermind behind an elaborate gambling scam which authorities say netted him between $6 million and $10 million.

Forged documents purported to be from the International Monetary Fund were part of the elaborate betting scam, a Gold Coast court has been told.

A magistrate today refused bail to Alan Ernest Davenport, 57, from the Gold Coast, who is facing five charges of intent to defraud, four of uttering false documents and one charge of dishonestly obtaining $200,000.

Prosecutor Rosanna Doolan told the Southport Magistrates Court that Davenport was the principal behind a sports arbitrage betting scheme which netted between $6 million and $10 million.

The scheme involved an invitation to put bets on all possible outcomes so a profit was made.

Between 600 and 700 people lost amounts between $10,000 and $400,000, police will allege.

“He used telemarketers to ring all around Australia and convince people to give money,” Ms Doolan said.

Clients were told the money was being bet on sports events all around the world.

“There is no evidence of betting ever taking place,” she said.

Clients were shown forged bank documents, including some purporting to be from the International Monetary Fund in Washington, the court heard.

“Essentially the entire process was a scam, a fraud of the highest, most deceptive nature,” the prosecutor said.

The court was told Davenport had previously served a jail sentence for two counts of fraud in Western Australia.

The latest behaviour showed “a repetitive, blatant and grossly dishonest disregard for the law”, Ms Doolan said.

The court was told Davenport had no income and no financial or family ties to keep him in Australia and might abscond if granted bail.

He also showed a capacity to interfere with witnesses and was at risk of being harmed by victims of the alleged scam.

“There is serious risk of retribution,” the prosecutor said.

Defence solicitor Grant Spedding said his client had been in Australia for 36 years and had shown no inclination to abscond even though he knew an 11-month police investigation could lead to him being charged.

Three co-accused will appear in court this afternoon.


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