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Winner of New York's biggest lottery jackpot sold himself the ticket

New York LotteryNew York Lottery: Winner of New York's biggest lottery jackpot sold himself the ticket

A Manhattan deli clerk may have sliced his last salami — after selling himself the winning ticket to the biggest scratch-off lottery jackpot in state history.

Waleed Alsaidi, 22, will take home $10,000 per week for the rest of his life — about $6,450 after taxes are withheld — after getting lucky in the New York Lottery's "Win for Life Spectacular" game.

The Yemen native said that he bought the ticket as a present to himself while working the lonely late shift on New Year's Eve at his family's S&M Deli on Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

He was so stunned when his scratch revealed the winning symbol — a coin — that he kept his amazing win secret from everyone for two days.

"I saw that coin and I couldn't believe it," he said yesterday. "It was a good surprise. It was nice. I'm going to start living good."

Alsaidi said that he has a wife and 7-month old son who still live in Yemen.

His first priority will be to visit them in the Arabian peninsula and eventually bring them and other relatives to America.

"I'm going to bring my family around," he said. "All my brothers and cousins."

The would be quite an expense, since the Yemeni man has a dozen brothers and sisters. A few of them, and his dad, already live in the United States.

At $20, the ticket was the most expensive scratch-off game that the New York Lottery offers, and its prize is unprecedented.

"It's our largest payout on any scratch card," said lottery spokesman John Charlson.

"This is the biggest win you can get."

There is no limit to how much Alsaidi could eventually take. If he lives to be more than 100, his winnings will be nearly $40 million, before taxes.

His family is guaranteed at least $10 million before taxes. If the winner should die young, his next of kin will still take up to $10 million before taxes, minus whatever he had already collected.

Alsaidi, who has been in the United States for 10 years, says that one of his goals will be to open up his own business. He would also like to move out of the humble apartment he shares with a roommate.

Other than that, he was tight-lipped about his plans, and seemed to fear publicity about his windfall.

He showed up with his brother at the victory press conference at Castle Clinton in Battery Park to accept the check from lottery legend Yolanda Vega yesterday. His brother was too shy to give his name.

He said that he has not yet told his wife about their good fortune, and will wait until he visits her in their homeland to spring the good news on her.

He did say that she was a little suspicious that he might have big news.

"Something is up, she says to me," he said.

Alsaidi wasn't the only winner announced yesterday.

Luz Vasquez, 54, of Brooklyn, won $1 million on the $500 million Extravaganza instant game.

The bookkeeper, a Colombia native, says she is going to pay for her granddaughter's education and pay off her credit-card debts. "I want to have a paycheck that is mine, not for the creditors," she said.

Maria Torres, 60, a school secretary from Staten Island, won $1 million on the Merry Money instant game.

And in the most poetic win of all, a 61-year-old Bronx building super named Jesus won $1 million with a scratch-off card that he bought on Christmas.

"I called my wife and she couldn't believe it," said lucky winner Jesus Rolan.

New York Post

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25 comments. Last comment 7 years ago by spy153.
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ThatScaryChick's avatar - AbnSTiA

United States
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November 21, 2007
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Posted: January 18, 2008, 9:32 pm - IP Logged

Congrats to Mr. Alsaidi! That is definitely a nice win. Yes Nod

"No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

    Rolling's avatar - pacman
    Queens, New York
    United States
    Member #20832
    August 26, 2005
    35 Posts
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    Posted: January 19, 2008, 12:00 am - IP Logged

    Once again we have a retailer or some employee of an establishment where lottery tickets are sold who has "picked" a jackpot winner. I don't know about everyone else, but I keep hearing too many of these stories lately. I personally think it should be prohibited for anyone who works in a store that sells lottery scratch game tickets (regardless of whether they are a manager, clerk, etc.) to be able to buy these tickets from that location. This should apply whether they are on or off duty too.

    I have played these games on occasion over the past several years and in that time I have come to realize and observe that some retailers like to "keep track" on the winners and losers in some rolls. I know it's not discussed much or ever admitted, but I'm sure it happens.

    This is especially true with the more expensive ($10-$20) scratch tickets, where the turnaround is much slower than the cheaper ($1-$2-$5) tickets. For example, if you are behind the counter and notice that 5 tickets from a certain $10-$20 roll were bought by a previous customer only to be losers, your chances of getting a winner on the next one are much better. However, someone who just walks in off the street would not know that. 

    I always get an uneasy feeling whenever I walk into a store and I spot the clerk scratching tickets behind the counter. It just doesn't look good and I end up not buying from the place whenever I see that happening.

    It should be the same as when some organization is holding a contest, sweepstakes or whatever. There is usually some list of rules or fine print somewhere that usually states that employees of that company (or even family members in most cases) are not eligible to participate.

    It's just trying to keep things fair (on the same playing field) and not offer any unfair advantages, no matter how large or small they appear to be.

      Avatar
      New Member
      NYC
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      Member #4274
      April 7, 2004
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      Posted: January 19, 2008, 12:30 am - IP Logged

      Once again we have a retailer or some employee of an establishment where lottery tickets are sold who has "picked" a jackpot winner. I don't know about everyone else, but I keep hearing too many of these stories lately. I personally think it should be prohibited for anyone who works in a store that sells lottery scratch game tickets (regardless of whether they are a manager, clerk, etc.) to be able to buy these tickets from that location. This should apply whether they are on or off duty too.

      I have played these games on occasion over the past several years and in that time I have come to realize and observe that some retailers like to "keep track" on the winners and losers in some rolls. I know it's not discussed much or ever admitted, but I'm sure it happens.

      This is especially true with the more expensive ($10-$20) scratch tickets, where the turnaround is much slower than the cheaper ($1-$2-$5) tickets. For example, if you are behind the counter and notice that 5 tickets from a certain $10-$20 roll were bought by a previous customer only to be losers, your chances of getting a winner on the next one are much better. However, someone who just walks in off the street would not know that. 

      I always get an uneasy feeling whenever I walk into a store and I spot the clerk scratching tickets behind the counter. It just doesn't look good and I end up not buying from the place whenever I see that happening.

      It should be the same as when some organization is holding a contest, sweepstakes or whatever. There is usually some list of rules or fine print somewhere that usually states that employees of that company (or even family members in most cases) are not eligible to participate.

      It's just trying to keep things fair (on the same playing field) and not offer any unfair advantages, no matter how large or small they appear to be.

      I agree anyone working in an establishment that sells instant lottery tickets SHOULD NOT be allowed to purchase tickets at that store.  Wasn't there some suspicion in Canada recently surrounding lottery retailers winning a large percentage of winnings????

      It just doesn't seem right.

        spy153's avatar - maren

        United States
        Member #28409
        December 15, 2005
        1198 Posts
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        Posted: January 19, 2008, 12:31 am - IP Logged

        Once again we have a retailer or some employee of an establishment where lottery tickets are sold who has "picked" a jackpot winner. I don't know about everyone else, but I keep hearing too many of these stories lately. I personally think it should be prohibited for anyone who works in a store that sells lottery scratch game tickets (regardless of whether they are a manager, clerk, etc.) to be able to buy these tickets from that location. This should apply whether they are on or off duty too.

        I have played these games on occasion over the past several years and in that time I have come to realize and observe that some retailers like to "keep track" on the winners and losers in some rolls. I know it's not discussed much or ever admitted, but I'm sure it happens.

        This is especially true with the more expensive ($10-$20) scratch tickets, where the turnaround is much slower than the cheaper ($1-$2-$5) tickets. For example, if you are behind the counter and notice that 5 tickets from a certain $10-$20 roll were bought by a previous customer only to be losers, your chances of getting a winner on the next one are much better. However, someone who just walks in off the street would not know that. 

        I always get an uneasy feeling whenever I walk into a store and I spot the clerk scratching tickets behind the counter. It just doesn't look good and I end up not buying from the place whenever I see that happening.

        It should be the same as when some organization is holding a contest, sweepstakes or whatever. There is usually some list of rules or fine print somewhere that usually states that employees of that company (or even family members in most cases) are not eligible to participate.

        It's just trying to keep things fair (on the same playing field) and not offer any unfair advantages, no matter how large or small they appear to be.

        are you kidding me?  You want them to not allow employees who sell the lottery tickets to be eligible to win? 

        If you think it is such an unfair advantage, why don't you get a job as a clerk selling the lottery tickets?  I'm sure you will change your mind about all of that real soon.  I worked in a store once as a clerk-no, not selling lottery tickets.  What makes you so certain they have time to notice such things?  And even if they do, that is no guarantee they are going to get all the winners.  I think if it's your time to win, you'll win, no matter what you did or didn't do.  I believe you can be strategic and increase your odds, but some people were just meant to win.  It's just who they are.  Besides, if anything, the clerks who work in the stores are probably more likely to develop an addiction to the lottery than anyone else.  Imagine seeing so many people coming in all the time cashing in winning tickets.  You know they are thinking "well, if they can do it, I can do it."  And off they go.  But they may not know that those players are spending hours working on their methods and strategies.

        Sorry for the long post, but I thought that to be very unfair to the clerks who sell us our tickets.

        voir-vous dans mes reves!Cool

          sirbrad's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
          PA
          United States
          Member #22983
          October 6, 2005
          2010 Posts
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          Posted: January 19, 2008, 1:50 am - IP Logged

          Almost $25,000 a month, wow that is just ridiculous. I hope there is no scamming somehow going on with employees buying where they work. PA has nothing close to that except $100,000 a year for life, which is actually $75,000. He will get this AFTER taxes in 3 months!

            ThatScaryChick's avatar - AbnSTiA

            United States
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            Posted: January 19, 2008, 12:14 pm - IP Logged

            I agree anyone working in an establishment that sells instant lottery tickets SHOULD NOT be allowed to purchase tickets at that store.  Wasn't there some suspicion in Canada recently surrounding lottery retailers winning a large percentage of winnings????

            It just doesn't seem right.

            Totally different story. The sellers in Canada were "stealing" peoples tickets, not buying tickets. Why shouldn't someone who works in a store not be allowed to purchase tickets? They are not anymore privy to certain numbers then someone who walks in and buys one.

            "No one remembers the person who almost climbed the mountain, only the person who eventually gets to the top."

              Avatar
              chicago
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              February 10, 2004
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              Posted: January 19, 2008, 1:16 pm - IP Logged

              Yes there is a big difference between what happened here and what people did in Canada.  But there is truth to the matter that if you work in a place that sells scratch off tickets and most of the people scratch them right in front of you and you see a big amount of losers in a row the chances are rest of the book will be somewhat positive or less of a losing roi.  Each book in most states has a specific amount of minimum prizes to it.   Say if you buy a roll of 60 $10 tickets in Illinois you are guaranteed that each book will pay out a minimum amount.  Books that have the big prizes in it will usually have a lower amount of other prizes to offset it.  So if I worked in a store that had ten or more straight losers in it I would probably buy the rest of the book knowing I would at least get fairly close to my investment back while having a better shot at maybe something big then just randomly buying a book.  This though I think is hard to do for most as many people buy the tickets and scratch at home and cash in maybe at another place. 

                Littleoldlady's avatar - basket
                Clarksville
                United States
                Member #487
                July 15, 2002
                17638 Posts
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                Posted: January 20, 2008, 10:04 am - IP Logged

                ..and if you are working for 7 bucks an hour..have bills to pay and gas to buy, tell me how in the world are you going to "pay" for those "remaining"scratch-offs ?  Clerks don't make that much..Most of the ones I know just buy an occasional scratch ticket mainly out of boredom..when I was a lottery clerk, I did, too.  You only buy 1 or 2 because you have to pay for them right now..just like everyone else...

                If you know your number is going to hit, have patience and then KILL IT!

                You never know when you will get another hit.

                  Avatar
                  MI
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                  August 14, 2005
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                  Posted: January 20, 2008, 11:28 am - IP Logged

                  In Michigan a few years ago when they were doing the second chance drawings on tv. Call me skeptical, but, it sure seemed like there was a large majority of winners that were of middle eastern descent.

                  Wonder what would happen if they interviewed all the people that recently received a small payout from this winner. It just seems a little funny that he is going out of his way to tell when he bought this ticket and how he waited to cash it in.

                    chasingadream's avatar - Archangel 01.jpg

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                    May 3, 2006
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                    Posted: January 20, 2008, 2:35 pm - IP Logged

                    wow

                    that shouds like a pretty good game. I wish we had a game like that.

                    Oogle  waiting patiently for my jackpot

                      justxploring's avatar - villiarna
                      Wandering Aimlessly
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                      November 5, 2005
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                      Posted: January 20, 2008, 3:51 pm - IP Logged

                      Just a couple of days ago I had this conversation with a clerk at Publix.  For those of you who aren't familiar with it, it's a very large supermarket chain with hundreds of stores throughout the Southeast.  Anyway, she said to me "I've got to cut down on buying scratch tickets."  I mentioned that I've read that a clerk has a small advantage.  She said it's hard not to buy them when you see people buying them all day.  She also agreed they have an advantage because they watch the activity in the store. Many times someone will buy 10 tickets and scratch at the counter, buy 10 more, etc.  So after knowing that 20 tickets didn't pay off, she might buy 5 of them.  That's not dishonest or stealing, but I suppose it's an advantage. 

                      I agree with Littleoldlady that most of these people don't have a lot of money to blow on a bunch of lottery tickets.  (I doubt if someone in NY only gets $7 an hour.  Even 7-11 pays more than that. Guess it depends on the area.)   However, the other day a woman bagging groceries was on break and ran over to the counter and bought 2 of the $20 scratch tickets.  I hope she won! 

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                        Posted: January 20, 2008, 11:59 pm - IP Logged

                        are you kidding me?  You want them to not allow employees who sell the lottery tickets to be eligible to win? 

                        If you think it is such an unfair advantage, why don't you get a job as a clerk selling the lottery tickets?  I'm sure you will change your mind about all of that real soon.  I worked in a store once as a clerk-no, not selling lottery tickets.  What makes you so certain they have time to notice such things?  And even if they do, that is no guarantee they are going to get all the winners.  I think if it's your time to win, you'll win, no matter what you did or didn't do.  I believe you can be strategic and increase your odds, but some people were just meant to win.  It's just who they are.  Besides, if anything, the clerks who work in the stores are probably more likely to develop an addiction to the lottery than anyone else.  Imagine seeing so many people coming in all the time cashing in winning tickets.  You know they are thinking "well, if they can do it, I can do it."  And off they go.  But they may not know that those players are spending hours working on their methods and strategies.

                        Sorry for the long post, but I thought that to be very unfair to the clerks who sell us our tickets.

                        Not saying they shouldnt be eligible to win. They just shouldn't be able to purchase the tickets from the store where they work.

                          bashley572's avatar - starwars14
                          West Side of Sunny Florida
                          United States
                          Member #55048
                          September 8, 2007
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                          Posted: January 21, 2008, 9:50 am - IP Logged

                          are you kidding me?  You want them to not allow employees who sell the lottery tickets to be eligible to win? 

                          If you think it is such an unfair advantage, why don't you get a job as a clerk selling the lottery tickets?  I'm sure you will change your mind about all of that real soon.  I worked in a store once as a clerk-no, not selling lottery tickets.  What makes you so certain they have time to notice such things?  And even if they do, that is no guarantee they are going to get all the winners.  I think if it's your time to win, you'll win, no matter what you did or didn't do.  I believe you can be strategic and increase your odds, but some people were just meant to win.  It's just who they are.  Besides, if anything, the clerks who work in the stores are probably more likely to develop an addiction to the lottery than anyone else.  Imagine seeing so many people coming in all the time cashing in winning tickets.  You know they are thinking "well, if they can do it, I can do it."  And off they go.  But they may not know that those players are spending hours working on their methods and strategies.

                          Sorry for the long post, but I thought that to be very unfair to the clerks who sell us our tickets.

                           "I worked in a store once as a clerk-no, not selling lottery tickets.  " - spy 153

                          I did work in a store selling tickets back in the late 80's, a liquor store.  That is what got me hooked on the 3 way.  We would have a line of people from 6:30pm to 7:20pm (the cut off for eve #'s) inwhich people were playing the 3 way.  And we also sold scratch offs.  The store manager would take the first & last ticket of every roll and buy those as she often won something on them.  Back then the first roll or two of any new game would have alot more winners in it then later on so as to get people to play that game for a while. 

                          Now I have stores that I go to which I just ask the clerks what games people have bought a lot of lately and not won.  Often they will tell me as I know most of them by first name and they see me cashing winners.   That is one way to use 'The clerk knows best' system to your advantage.  Cool

                          Money won is twice as good as money earned!

                            tntea's avatar - Lottery-059.jpg

                            United States
                            Member #5344
                            June 30, 2004
                            23622 Posts
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                            Posted: January 21, 2008, 9:56 am - IP Logged

                            Fantastic Story...

                            Starts a great conversation, too.

                            I sell scratch offs on Sunday morning.  I took the job working for a friend years ago because I couldn't handle the "empty house" syndrome when my daughter moved out. (The cat couldn't talk...)     I still work for this woman on Sunday mornings because I enjoy the company of my co-worker and this is what we call "our day together",  The pay isn't bad either over $10 per hour, unlike what some clerks gets.  The woman we work for treats us really well and intends to keep her employees with good pay.

                             

                            As for the tickets,  I have seen a lot of bad rolls.   I don't scratch. I consider the tickets for suckers.  Just my opinion.   I prefer the online games.  However, TN uses the computer drawings which makes it less appealing to me now. 

                            There are lots of rolls that are opened at beginning of my shift.  I have customers buying 10/20 with only winning a ticket.  The co-worker bought $60 of the $2 tickets after a 20 pull loser and only got a ticket.   Another customer finished the roll and got $25 , $7,  and a 3 free tickets.     So the whole roll paid less than $100... 

                            I have seen the $10 roll have 12 in a roll that were losers.. and then 4 free tickets on the next 10.. Bad odds if you ask me..

                            I have seen one ticket bought on two dollar roll that brought $2000...  This is a roll that rarely pays at all...

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