Gambling addict ran an eBay scam

A GAMBLING addict conned unsuspecting eBay customers out of thousands of pounds in an online scam before trying to kill himself.

Ryan Herring could now be forced to repay thousands he amassed by ripping off customers after he was jailed at Doncaster Crown Court.

A judge praised police for a marathon probe which unearthed more than 400 offences with estimated profits of up to 70,000.

Because many of Herring's victims had not come forward he was jailed at Doncaster Crown Court for fraud totalling 14,300.

Police have now launched a Proceeds of Crime Act investigation to recoup the money.

However, Herring, whose parents are said to have spent around 10,000 of their life savings repaying their son's victims, had filed for bankruptcy, the court heard.

The 22-year-old old of Old Hall Place, Bentley, was due to be sentenced last month but attempted a drugs overdose on the morning of the hearing.

He appeared in the dock this week with several cuts on his face which his barrister said were self-inflicted.

The court heard how "stone broke" Herring turned to fraud to fund his addiction setting up fictitious accounts on eBay, which included positive feedback to convince customers he was genuine.

However, none of the computer consoles, games CDs and DVDs he sold ever arrived because he did not have them.

He committed 416 offences over a two year period, the hearing was told.

Four of these offences were committed while he was already on police bail after pleading guilty to the others, according to prosecutor Neil Coxon.

A bank analysis found over 30,000 went into his account between April and September 2007 and Herring accepted most of the cash was as a result of fraud, Mr Coxon told the court.

The court heard how Herring was first arrested and interviewed by police in September 2007 after a fellow eBay user made a complaint, but he insisted he was running a legitimate business.

He blamed his suppliers for goods not being delivered. It was not until Herring's third police interview in May 2009 that he confessed.

Herring told officers he had squandered the majority of the falsely obtained money on gambling machines and horse racing bets.

He was jailed for 12 months after pleading guilty to six specimen charges of fraud.