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N.Y. store clerk busted in Lotto scam

New York LotteryNew York Lottery: N.Y. store clerk busted in Lotto scam

A man who bought a Lotto ticket worth $1 million at a Huntington Station store was almost swindled out of his winnings by the clerk, State Police said.

Carlos Canas bought the $1 million Lotto Luck scratch-off ticket at Huntington Beverage, 1687 New York Ave., on June 7 and immediately knew he had won.

Wanting to verify his winnings and get information on how to claim the prize, police said Canas handed the ticket to the clerk, Mohinder K. Misri.

Misri allegedly scanned the ticket, tore it in half, threw it in the trash and told Canas he had won $100. When Canas asked for the ticket back to redeem it at another Lotto retailer, police said Misri allegedly pulled a winning ticket worth $20 out of the trash and attempted to hand it to him.

Canas went to the garbage and pulled out his ticket when the store owner appeared. She scanned the ticket to verify that it was worth $1 million, gave him a computer printout and referred him to the Lotto offices in Garden City to claim his prize, because it was more than $600.

"If (Canas) wasn't so astute, he could've walked away with $100 and the clerk $1 million," said state Trooper Eric Baez. "It's really an opportunity to take advantage of someone."

During an interview with Lotto officials the next day in Garden City, Canas revealed the incident with Misri. They thought it was odd that a winning ticket would be torn, Baez said.

The New York Lottery Security Unit and the New York State Police Video Lottery Unit contacted New York State Police Troop L for help in the investigation.

Misri was arrested on Thursday, his day off, at his Huntington home and was charged with attempted grand larceny, a Class C felony. He was held in Suffolk County Jail until he posted $5,000 bail Saturday.

Newsday

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15 comments. Last comment 11 years ago by qutgnt.
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bellyache's avatar - 64x64a9wg

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Posted: June 26, 2006, 1:27 pm - IP Logged

Misri was arrested on Thursday, his day off, at his Huntington home and was charged with attempted grand larceny, a Class C felony. He was held in Suffolk County Jail until he posted $5,000 bail Saturday.

I hope the guy actually does some time. These types of cases seem to be popping up more and more.

Dance like no one is watching.

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    Coastal Georgia
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    Posted: June 26, 2006, 1:58 pm - IP Logged

    Do I even have to say it ?

    OK, I will : Check your own ____ tickets !!!!

    If you have common sense enough to play it, you ought to have sense enough to know what you win. Never give it away .

    DD

     

                                   

                  

     

     

      amilby30's avatar - nw logo.jpg
      Cobb
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      Posted: June 26, 2006, 2:02 pm - IP Logged

      he should have been a member of the post  then he would have known were to go cash that ticket

      I LOVE THIS SPORT !!   BY30PREDICTIONS

        justxploring's avatar - villiarna
        Wandering Aimlessly
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        Posted: June 26, 2006, 2:35 pm - IP Logged

        DD, I agree with you. However, I see people checking tickets every day at the store.  Some of the terminals show the amount won or "no winner" on the back so the customer can read it, but I don't see them at every location. 

        Do any stores have self-checking terminals?  I figure if I can use the self checkout at Walmart and Albertson's (which seems to always be disabled) there should be a do-it-yourself lottery terminal. You put in a dollar, like a change machine at a car wash, you punch in your numbers or press quickpick, you're then asked "are you sure?" and hit "yes" and get a ticket...just like an ATM. What could be simpler? Same for checking a ticket. You scan the ticket, it says "yes you are a winner" or "no you are not a winner"  Still, I would never throw away a ticket until I was absolutely sure.

          bellyache's avatar - 64x64a9wg

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          Posted: June 26, 2006, 2:59 pm - IP Logged

          DD, I agree with you. However, I see people checking tickets every day at the store.  Some of the terminals show the amount won or "no winner" on the back so the customer can read it, but I don't see them at every location. 

          Do any stores have self-checking terminals?  I figure if I can use the self checkout at Walmart and Albertson's (which seems to always be disabled) there should be a do-it-yourself lottery terminal. You put in a dollar, like a change machine at a car wash, you punch in your numbers or press quickpick, you're then asked "are you sure?" and hit "yes" and get a ticket...just like an ATM. What could be simpler? Same for checking a ticket. You scan the ticket, it says "yes you are a winner" or "no you are not a winner"  Still, I would never throw away a ticket until I was absolutely sure.

          I just check my numbers online. I haven't seen any self-checking terminals in my area. And I agree, I always go over my tickets throughly before I toss them. I don't leave the ticket checking to the clerk. I figure I bought the ticket so I can't check it.

          Dance like no one is watching.

            TheGameGrl's avatar - character catafly.jpg
            A long and winding road
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            Posted: June 26, 2006, 8:25 pm - IP Logged

            Self scanning opens the door for far too many opportunities for the scammers. Regulating it is indeed the answer. Holding a store clerk accountable protects the bearer.  Rule of thumb, always sign your tickets before redeeming them.  To those that say "check your own ticket before redeeming" , how about thinking of circumstances where a person *needs* to rely on a trusting employee or family member to aid in the ticket checking. My uncle has glaucoma and dearly enjoys the scratch off games and the Quickpick Powerball game. But the ink sometimes is very light . When he wins, we take him to the store to redeem it. There are no regulations in the lottery saying that a sight impaired person isnt allowed to play or *shouldnt* play.  So be gentle with situation that dont always fall under the common sense realm. For a sight impaired person it is *common sense* to ask for assistance from a trustworthy person.

            ANd yes, he signs his own tickets when they are purchased. 

            ~~Is it true, Is it kind,Is it necessary. ~~~

            pa:888,4445,6132,4444,8008

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              Coastal Georgia
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              Posted: June 26, 2006, 8:58 pm - IP Logged

              Self scanning opens the door for far too many opportunities for the scammers. Regulating it is indeed the answer. Holding a store clerk accountable protects the bearer.  Rule of thumb, always sign your tickets before redeeming them.  To those that say "check your own ticket before redeeming" , how about thinking of circumstances where a person *needs* to rely on a trusting employee or family member to aid in the ticket checking. My uncle has glaucoma and dearly enjoys the scratch off games and the Quickpick Powerball game. But the ink sometimes is very light . When he wins, we take him to the store to redeem it. There are no regulations in the lottery saying that a sight impaired person isnt allowed to play or *shouldnt* play.  So be gentle with situation that dont always fall under the common sense realm. For a sight impaired person it is *common sense* to ask for assistance from a trustworthy person.

              ANd yes, he signs his own tickets when they are purchased. 

              I hear ya GameGirl ...but finding the "trustworthy " person presents a challenge.

              There are lots of them out there on the surface, but the opportunity to obtain large amounts of $$ makes  the list quickly dwindle...

              Again, common sense should prevail.

              DD

               

                                             

                            

               

               

                bellyache's avatar - 64x64a9wg

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                Posted: June 26, 2006, 9:29 pm - IP Logged
                Self scanning opens the door for far too many opportunities for the scammers. Regulating it is indeed the answer. Holding a store clerk accountable protects the bearer. Rule of thumb, always sign your tickets before redeeming them. To those that say "check your own ticket before redeeming" , how about thinking of circumstances where a person *needs* to rely on a trusting employee or family member to aid in the ticket checking. My uncle has glaucoma and dearly enjoys the scratch off games and the Quickpick Powerball game. But the ink sometimes is very light . When he wins, we take him to the store to redeem it. There are no regulations in the lottery saying that a sight impaired person isnt allowed to play or *shouldnt* play. So be gentle with situation that dont always fall under the common sense realm. For a sight impaired person it is *common sense* to ask for assistance from a trustworthy person.

                ANd yes, he signs his own tickets when they are purchased.

                I agree with some of your points, but I still disagree on relying on store clerks to help anyone check your tickets. And no one said that those who are impaired in some way shouldn't play. If a player needs someone to help them check their tickets, they need to find a trusted friend, family member or colleague. In my opinion and many others, relying on store clerks to be honest is a risking thing to do. Just read all the stories that pop up here.

                ETA: And no I don't think all store clerks are untrustworthy. There are many upstanding, decent clerks who don't try to rip people off.

                Dance like no one is watching.

                  guesser's avatar - Lottery-017.jpg

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                  Posted: June 27, 2006, 12:21 am - IP Logged

                  What about signing the back of the ticket when you first buy it, does that at least help ?

                  I mean, sure, maybe they can find some way to boil off most of the ink, but not all of it ??

                   

                  I'm just asking, don't shoot me. 

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                    Posted: June 27, 2006, 10:29 am - IP Logged

                    Am I the only one who finds it odd that the guy would have a $20 winning ticket in the trashcan?!?! I mean, did he just have this ticket in the trash in case some poor sucker came up with a winning ticket with a higher value so he could switch them out? It just seems strange to me that anyone would knowingly put a winning ticket in the trash only to pull it out later and attempt to hand it to someone.

                      justxploring's avatar - villiarna
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                      Posted: June 27, 2006, 11:21 am - IP Logged

                      Self scanning opens the door for far too many opportunities for the scammers. Regulating it is indeed the answer. Holding a store clerk accountable protects the bearer.  Rule of thumb, always sign your tickets before redeeming them.  To those that say "check your own ticket before redeeming" , how about thinking of circumstances where a person *needs* to rely on a trusting employee or family member to aid in the ticket checking. My uncle has glaucoma and dearly enjoys the scratch off games and the Quickpick Powerball game. But the ink sometimes is very light . When he wins, we take him to the store to redeem it. There are no regulations in the lottery saying that a sight impaired person isnt allowed to play or *shouldnt* play.  So be gentle with situation that dont always fall under the common sense realm. For a sight impaired person it is *common sense* to ask for assistance from a trustworthy person.

                      ANd yes, he signs his own tickets when they are purchased. 

                      I hear ya GameGirl ...but finding the "trustworthy " person presents a challenge.

                      There are lots of them out there on the surface, but the opportunity to obtain large amounts of $$ makes  the list quickly dwindle...

                      Again, common sense should prevail.

                      DD

                      I think I was misunderstood, because you sound very defensive Gamegrl.  I was only asking if these terminals were available for those who want to purchase lottery tickets (I thought I've read that there are such machines) or scan them. As far as self-serve anything, they are usually a choice from an ATM to a check-out line to choosing drive-thru or going into the restaurant. If a restaurant offers pickup/drive-thru service, that doesn't mean people who don't own a vehicle or are unable to drive can't eat at a table inside.  However, I've also gotten the wrong order so even though I can drive, I still need to make sure the person who handed me the food didn't make a mistake.  Last week at Publix the cashier was talking to another cashier while scanning (I really don't like that!) and gave me my receipt without my $20 cashback. Fortunately I mentioned it right away and she said "oops, sorry." Years ago I went back to the store and they had to shut the aisle and count the register. I was apologetic and a little embarrassed at first, but they found an extra $20 in the drawer. I thought she had wrapped it in the receipt as they usually do. Stupid on my part? Maybe, but what I'm saying is that even people who are not visually impaired need to be careful. I'll skip the story about when the bank shorted me $1,800!! Okay, just briefly..when I moved here 12 years ago I had some $1,000 traveler cheques and cashed 2 of them at a Barnett Bank in Naples. The teller put the money into an envelope for me. When I got to the apartment I was going to rent, I opened the envelope and only had $200. Honest to God this is a true story. So the bottom line is ...  people make mistakes. Always count your money and always make sure the person paying you counts it too.

                      Regarding the handicapped or visually impaired, I've written many letters in the past to get ramps installed in parking lots and I've requested more large print publications.  If I suggested that people take the stairs in a 4 story building, it doesn't mean that an elevator isn't needed for those who can't climb stairs. You probably realize that all ATMs at the bank including the drive-thru have numbers in Braille. Some people say it's so a visually impaired person can use an ATM in private, but most of the questions are written on the screen anyway. The only thing I can think of is reaching out of the car and entering the PIN, but someone you trust would still need to do everything else. So an ATM is a good example of a "do-it-yourself" money machine isn't it? It too can "open the door for far too many opportunities for the scammers" but that's why people who can't depend on their own faculties need to be accompanied by loving friends or relatives.

                      Rule of thumb, always sign your tickets before redeeming them.  To those that say "check your own ticket before redeeming" , how about thinking of circumstances where a person *needs* to rely on a trusting employee or family member to aid in the ticket checking.

                      I agree. Many people rely on friends and relatives for help every day. However, according to many people on this site, signing a ticket right away might not be the best thing if the prize is large, although I've questioned whether or not that would really prevent someone from claiming the money in the name of a Trust. I would be nervous even if I put an unsigned ticket in a sale deposit box at a bank, but experts advise to wait until you've contacted a lawyer if you hit a jackpot.  I have nothing but compassion for people with special needs, and used to read to the sight impaired, but those people are the most vulnerable. So why can't one of the trusting family members you mentioned also look up the numbers instead of a clerk? If that's what you're saying, then I agree 100%, however a self-serve machine with voice would take away any doubt and also make the person feel more independent! I think DD and the others who suggested being self-reliant, were only being rational and not insensitive to those with special circumstances and as DD wrote above, common sense should prevail.

                      "When he wins, we take him to the store to redeem it."

                      Good for you! But are you relying on the clerk like the one in this article? Wouldn't you feel lousy if he got ripped off because you trusted someone who wasn't honest? I don't think any regulation will ever prevent a thief from being exactly what he is - unscrupulous! Regulations only make it easier for one to be caught, which is what happened. The tickets are coded with many numbers. I don't see how they could be regulated any more. Any store with a lottery terminal probably should have a camera facing it, but I'm not sure every small store would invest in all the security you suggest. As I mentioned in my first post, some terminals do show "winner" or "no winner" for the customer to see, and I believe they also read scratch tickets. Sorry for such a long post, but whether you are dealing with a doctor, a lawyer, an accountant or a store clerk who short changes you or steals your lottery ticket, there will always be people who lie and try to steal from the unsuspecting souls who place their trust in them. No offense was ever intended by my previous suggestions or remarks.


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                        Posted: June 28, 2006, 10:54 am - IP Logged

                        The scratch ticket was annuity-only. They always make the news.

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                          Posted: June 28, 2006, 6:27 pm - IP Logged

                          Am I the only one who finds it odd that the guy would have a $20 winning ticket in the trashcan?!?! I mean, did he just have this ticket in the trash in case some poor sucker came up with a winning ticket with a higher value so he could switch them out? It just seems strange to me that anyone would knowingly put a winning ticket in the trash only to pull it out later and attempt to hand it to someone.

                          HAPPY WEDNESDAY SONIA....6/28/06

                          YES...I concurr w you, but he "allegedly handed him a $20.00 winning ticket....There is probably more to the story than this, for example, was the $20 ticket already validated and paid off? It would also appear that the winner of the million dollar scratch off, didn't understand english very well, otherwise I don't think this mishap would have occurred so easily.......

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                            Posted: June 28, 2006, 6:59 pm - IP Logged

                            Happy Wednesday to you too Libra!

                             

                            Thanks for the explanation. That makes more sense to me. I'm just glad that the creep got caught!