The murder of betting shop manager Andrew Iacovou, 55, at the Ladbrokes branch in Aberconway Road, Morden, on 25 May, saw local newspaper the Sutton Guardian launch its SafeBet campaign. The campaign aims to improve safety measures for betting shop staff members and has been backed by Carshalton and Wellington MP Tom Brake.
Andrew Iacovou, was working alone as betting shop manager, when he was attacked by Shafique Ahmad Aarij, 21. Iacovou was reportedly hit with a hammer eight times over the head, the betting shop manager was able to press the panic alarm, however in-store CCTV was not working, this meant that security could not be dispatched to the betting shop. Police report that Andrew Iacovou lay dead for more than two hours before being found by customers.
MP Tom Brake set up meetings with the operator, to discuss improving safety standards for retail workers. Brake and the Sutton Guardian, aim to change the operators policy on single man management.
Ladbrokes have responded to the SafeBet Campaign. Chris Cerroni, Director of Compliance for Ladbrokes, unveiled a range of new safety measures planned to roll out to all 2,200 stores, which include in-store risk assessment, staff training to potential threats, and whether shops should be allowed to be single-manned. Furthermore Ladbrokes aims to cater its retail stores with improved security systems and sophisticated alarms.