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Canadian family charged with stealing $12.5M lottery jackpot

Ontario Lottery and Gaming CorporationOntario Lottery and Gaming Corporation: Canadian family charged with stealing $12.5M lottery jackpot
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Search is on for rightful owner of winning ticket

Are you the victim of an alleged $12.5-million lottery jackpot theft?

Ontario police say someone else celebrated with what should have been your happy dance. The "rightful" owner of the Super 7 ticket was defrauded of the winnings nearly seven years ago, police say.

Meanwhile, investigators allege the family accused of stealing the winnings lived in the lap of luxury — multiple homes and BMW and Mercedes vehicles were among their big-ticket purchases.

On Wednesday, Ontario Provincial Police and Ontario Lottery and Gaming launched a search for the person or persons they're calling the true owner of the ticket that won the Dec. 26, 2003 draw.

"We don't know the identity of the person who bought the ticket because, historically, lottery in Canada has been anonymous," said OLG chairman Paul Godfrey. "But if someone can come in and tell us everything we already know about the ticket, down to the last detail, there's a good chance we're looking at the rightful owner."

Someone bought a ticket at a That's Entertainment video store in St. Catharines, Ont., and validated it in nearby Burlington, where it won a free play, police allege. The father and son who validated the ticket at the convenience store never handed the free ticket over to the customer, police said.

Then that ticket hit the jackpot.

It's alleged the father gave the ticket to his daughter, who claimed the prize and denied she had a connection to a lottery retailer.

Jun-Chul Chung, 60, Kathleen Chung, 29, and Kenneth Chung, 28, face several charges, including fraud over $5,000 and possession under $5,000. They were released on bail after appearing in a Milton, Ont., court Wednesday, and their next court appearance is scheduled for Oct. 27.

Police have seized or frozen about $10 million in assets.

The family used the payout to buy five luxury cars, two homes in the Toronto area, commercial properties, fancy jewellery and electronics, police said.

The OLG said it uncovered the alleged fraud thanks to new technology it's been using since June to track and detect patterns in ticket sale data. In this case, the technology created a profile of the owner of the 2003 winning ticket.

The ticket buyer likely lived and worked in both St. Catharines and Burlington and often bought many tickets, which leads investigators to believe the winning ticket was part of a group purchase. The buyer regularly purchased Super 7 tickets at That's Entertainment.

Mr. Godfrey said the new data analysis computer system, developed with Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft, can scan data as far back as 1999, and could potentially find that others may have also been defrauded.

Whenever the new technology finds something suspicious, the OLG hands information over to police, he said.

The OLG says other provincial counterparts have expressed interest in adopting similar systems.

Both the OLG and provincial police are prepared to wade through the thousands of calls they expect to receive from people who think they may have won. They will ask each claimant specific questions to determine whether they are the victim in question.

In June, convenience store owner Hafiz Malik was sentenced to one year in jail for stealing and claiming a $5.7 million prize.

Police confirmed they are investigating other potential cases but wouldn't reveal further details.

"This is a never-ending process. As time goes on there will be other suspicious wins that will be investigated," said OPP commissioner Chris Lewis.

The Ontario government called in the police three years ago after the province's ombudsman accused unscrupulous lottery-ticket retailers of collecting tens of millions of dollars in "dishonest" winnings.

The scandals led to changes in the lottery system, which now requires winners to sign their ticket before handing it over to a store clerk, bans clerks from buying tickets in their own store, and plays loud music when a winning ticket is scanned to make sure everyone knows the ticket is a winner.

Mr. Godfrey said that despite another black eye on the OLG's record, he believes the corporation is making progress in regaining the public's trust.

"It has been a long hill up. Are we at the top yet? Definitely not, we have more work to do but we're on the right road," he said. "The public should take great confidence that the OLG is moving swiftly in this area."

OLG, which rakes in about $6.5 billion in revenues a year, has been plagued with other problems ranging from questionable expenses to botched scratch-and-win tickets, malfunctioning slot machines, lawsuits from gambling addicts, and a controversial casino power plant that ended up costing taxpayers $80 million.

CP

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24 comments. Last comment 6 years ago by sully16.
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THRUST's avatar - f35l

United States
Member #88435
March 16, 2010
397 Posts
Offline
Posted: September 30, 2010, 9:18 am - IP Logged

Shame on them.  No No

$1,000,000

    savagegoose's avatar - ProfilePho
    adelaide sa
    Australia
    Member #37136
    April 11, 2006
    3300 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: September 30, 2010, 9:36 am - IP Logged

    well that is an amazing story. people whjo dont even know theyve been scammed are beinglooked after. how would you feel.  looks like another one for self picked over quick picks, im sure there in not much of a profile available for  quick pickers. but im guessing the  numnbers entered where part of a regular purchase of the same numbers in the same stores.

    2014 = -1016; 2015= -1409; 2016 JAN = -106; FEB= -81; MAR= -131; APR= - 87: MAY= -91; JUN= -39; JUL=-134; AUG= -124; SEP = -123; OCT= -84  NOV=- 73 TOT= -3498

    keno historic = -2291 ; 2015= -603; 2016= JAN=-32, FEB= +12 , MAR= -86, APR = -77. MAY= -48, JUN= -29, JUL=-71; AUG = -52; SEPT= -43; OCT = +56 NOV = -33 TOT= -3297

      dpoly1's avatar - driver
      PA
      United States
      Member #66141
      October 16, 2008
      1672 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: September 30, 2010, 10:59 am - IP Logged

      Wow! These days it seems that we cannot trust very many people. I am always wary of people as I go about my business each day. If I have not know someone for 30 or 40 years, I view them with caution!

      I am least comfortable around people in public places. You can't trust hardly anyone these days. There is a family that lives about 200 yards away from me that is constantly being arrested! The 18 year old son was recently shot tying to rob a 74 year old man!

      These clerks should get the maximum penalty!

      Stay safe Lottery Post friends!

      Oh, I just won $9 by using a PA Lottery coupon for a free Mega Millions ticket with MegaPlier!

        Grovel's avatar - f800e6a39fbfea795d1dcbb09f2244
        Little Rock, AR
        United States
        Member #68365
        December 19, 2008
        241 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: September 30, 2010, 10:59 am - IP Logged

        I have to blame the victim as well. It's not that hard to check your own ticket or at the very least sign the back of it before you hand it to someone.


          United States
          Member #68713
          December 28, 2008
          301 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: September 30, 2010, 11:06 am - IP Logged

          I am wondering now, If I have been scam too I have had a lot of tickets before getting clued in on the see the not a winner slip.Cussing Face Shame on those creeps for their  dishonesty,hope they get enough time to make them ask the question is it worth it. Throw the book at them.No No

            Avatar
            NY
            United States
            Member #23835
            October 16, 2005
            3474 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: September 30, 2010, 11:30 am - IP Logged

            I recently got a free QP when I bought a NY lotto ticket. I had no idea there was any kind of promotion, and looked on the lottery's website but couldn't find anything. If the clerk had simply kept the ticket there's no way I would have known.

              fwlawrence's avatar - Yavill
              Austin
              United States
              Member #9378
              December 6, 2004
              210 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: September 30, 2010, 3:46 pm - IP Logged

              I still don't understand that if no one came forward to say they've been scammed in the first place, then how were these people suspected?

                RJOh's avatar - chipmunk
                mid-Ohio
                United States
                Member #9
                March 24, 2001
                19824 Posts
                Online
                Posted: September 30, 2010, 4:26 pm - IP Logged

                I still don't understand that if no one came forward to say they've been scammed in the first place, then how were these people suspected?

                Someone bought a ticket at a That's Entertainment video store in St. Catharines, Ont., and validated it in nearby Burlington, where it won a free play, police allege. The father and son who validated the ticket at the convenience store never handed the free ticket over to the customer, police said.

                It's unlikely someone who owned and worked at a store in Burlington that sold lottery tickets would travel to St. Catharines to buy lottery tickets and validate them at their own store.  I'm surprised that they could track a free ticket back to the ticket that won it.  Also I wonder why the father and son would steal a free ticket which was only worth the price of a ticket before the drawing took place unless they had a habit of trying to steal all their customers free tickets.

                 * you don't need to buy more tickets, just buy a winning ticket * 
                   
                             Evil Looking       

                  Avatar
                  Las Vegas, NV
                  United States
                  Member #44841
                  August 9, 2006
                  1749 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: September 30, 2010, 5:28 pm - IP Logged

                  Someone bought a ticket at a That's Entertainment video store in St. Catharines, Ont., and validated it in nearby Burlington, where it won a free play, police allege. The father and son who validated the ticket at the convenience store never handed the free ticket over to the customer, police said.

                  It's unlikely someone who owned and worked at a store in Burlington that sold lottery tickets would travel to St. Catharines to buy lottery tickets and validate them at their own store.  I'm surprised that they could track a free ticket back to the ticket that won it.  Also I wonder why the father and son would steal a free ticket which was only worth the price of a ticket before the drawing took place unless they had a habit of trying to steal all their customers free tickets.

                  I'm surprised that they could track a free ticket back to the ticket that won it.  Also I wonder why the father and son would steal a free ticket which was only worth the price of a ticket before the drawing took place unless they had a habit of trying to steal all their customers free tickets.

                  When I used to live and play in NY I would win free plays often from the Take-5 game.  Clerks would regularly attempt to STEAL one here and there.  I say here and there because I used to play a large amount of games and check them BEFORE going to cash in.  I would immediately know that one was missing because I would count them before and after handing the slips to be validated and always some lame excuse why one or two was missing.  I mean they would even crumple up the ticket and act as if it was going in the garbage!  When it happens once or twice you could say okay maybe it was a mistake, but when it happens on a regular basis... at different locations, then that's something else altogether.  I think all those "bad" retailers school each other on how to do "bad" things!!! And I know other people that have had very similar experiences, especially where free plays are concerned.  Beware LP'ers ...

                    MADDOG10's avatar - smoke
                    Beautiful Florida
                    United States
                    Member #5709
                    July 18, 2004
                    20108 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: September 30, 2010, 6:13 pm - IP Logged

                    I would be able to understand this better, If it was a winner and they weren't given the ticket back then I would say the OLG and police had a case, but the winning ticket came out as a free play and they or nobody else would have known it was a winner. A person could have validated the other ticket and then left the free play or forgot about it. Their case is slim to none IMHO...!

                                                                 

                                                                   "  When Injustice Becomes Law, Resistance Becomes Duty "

                      Diamon Life's avatar - yocco
                      New York
                      United States
                      Member #95298
                      August 7, 2010
                      41 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: September 30, 2010, 8:21 pm - IP Logged

                      Shame, Shame on them!!!

                      Those lotto clerks are out to take everything and anything. I ounce experience this year a lotto clerk trying to take my take 5 lotto 3rd place win, I had 2 tickets worth 20 dollars each and he only gave me back the 2 free plays on it and said that's all you get. Well I made a ruckus in that store for my ticket back and my money. After arguing with the clerk for sometime and was about to call the police, he suddenly realize its a winner after all. I latter found out he has been scamming other lotto players in the neighborhood because I told my story to every lotto player I see in the neighborhood and they said it has happen to them as well. The irony to all this is that some months latter the lotto store burned down. Is sad but true.

                        HaveABall's avatar - rocket

                        United States
                        Member #72448
                        March 18, 2009
                        1228 Posts
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                        Posted: October 1, 2010, 1:09 am - IP Logged

                        Shame, Shame on them!!!

                        Those lotto clerks are out to take everything and anything. I ounce experience this year a lotto clerk trying to take my take 5 lotto 3rd place win, I had 2 tickets worth 20 dollars each and he only gave me back the 2 free plays on it and said that's all you get. Well I made a ruckus in that store for my ticket back and my money. After arguing with the clerk for sometime and was about to call the police, he suddenly realize its a winner after all. I latter found out he has been scamming other lotto players in the neighborhood because I told my story to every lotto player I see in the neighborhood and they said it has happen to them as well. The irony to all this is that some months latter the lotto store burned down. Is sad but true.

                        Perhaps the store burning down wasn't irony.

                        Having several millions of dollars in my financial accounts means receiving several valuable services each day!

                        Disney

                          Avatar
                          New Member
                          richmond/virginia
                          United States
                          Member #56171
                          November 5, 2007
                          2 Posts
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                          Posted: October 1, 2010, 4:53 am - IP Logged

                          i visit this site pretty often to see new lotto stories and what not and i think im more amazed at this certain post, not because of what happend but the fact that no one took notice to the fact that they so call have a new technology  that creates profiles on the consumers and not just consu,ers as a whole but individualy which is by far the most suspect thing i have ever heard .....i dont this i  really need to say more, i mean dont get me wrong people do win and the chance IS there but is there someone deciding who wins????????

                            savagegoose's avatar - ProfilePho
                            adelaide sa
                            Australia
                            Member #37136
                            April 11, 2006
                            3300 Posts
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                            Posted: October 1, 2010, 5:29 am - IP Logged

                            http://www.salotteries.com.au/Content.aspx?p=150

                             

                            here is link to my states player registration card. once it used ot cost $2 a year to get and keep emebership but now its an added cost of the ticket price.

                            sure freedom and all that but at least the tickets YOU buy are safely in your name. although there was a news article about a woman who bought a ticket and the agent accidently registered it onto someone elses card!

                             

                            didnt clear the machine properly before the lady bought her ticket, and she didnt look at ticket or know it was on someone elses cartd. end resulkt they sent the $800 win to the card holder!

                             

                            but to the point about player registration cards, we have em here and i like em. ive even missed as few  wins and checques mysteriously turn up in the mail for me.

                            2014 = -1016; 2015= -1409; 2016 JAN = -106; FEB= -81; MAR= -131; APR= - 87: MAY= -91; JUN= -39; JUL=-134; AUG= -124; SEP = -123; OCT= -84  NOV=- 73 TOT= -3498

                            keno historic = -2291 ; 2015= -603; 2016= JAN=-32, FEB= +12 , MAR= -86, APR = -77. MAY= -48, JUN= -29, JUL=-71; AUG = -52; SEPT= -43; OCT = +56 NOV = -33 TOT= -3297