|Posted: January 21, 2012, 9:00 am - IP Logged|
"The Iowa Lottery's security chief says it will likely take "several...days" of face-to-face meetings with a New York attorney and others to get all the questions answered about a winning "Hot Lotto" ticket."
It doesn't take several days just to ask if the owner of the trust purchased the ticket, why they waited until the last minute to have the ticket validated, and why was it necessary to use an out of state lawyer to sign for the trust. Logical answers would be the player that purchased the ticket died before having it validated, the ticket was recently discovered, and the trust was formed by the executor who lives out of state.
Barney Fife Steve Bogle needs more evidence than "something smells fishy" to stop payment on the prize.
The "several days" is because confirmation is needed. Verification of what the lawyer says. You going to take a lawyer at his word without proof?
And time has proved you wrong. It's already been several days and the lawyer still has not answered the questions. So there. They security chief was right in his prediction this case would at least take several days.
Until the lawyer can show the ticket holder got it legitimately (instead of by theft using hacking of the state lottery computer system, like those other people did) the money is not going to be paid to a potential thief.
If the ticket is legit, then that lawyer better start answering questions and providing some proof. The person or persons in the trust better tell their lawyer to answer the questions. It's one thing to try to protect your privacy... it's another to let $10 million slip through your grasp because you can't/won't show how you came to be in possession of this ticket you waited until less than two hours before the deadline to claim.
If the people in this so-called trust won't identify themselves, and allow the money to go unclaimed, then it was a scam that was averted.
The Iowa Lottery is one of 15 state lotteries that pool resources to offer jackpots starting at $1 million in Hot Lotto, a numbers game similar to Powerball. Since the ticket was purchased in Iowa, the responsibility of investigating the claim and awarding the prize falls to Iowa Lottery officials.
The ticket played two sets of numbers over the next five drawings. The winning numbers hit on the second drawing, Dec. 29, 2010. The ticket was worth $16.5 million at the time.
Shaw sent the ticket by Federal Express to the Davis Brown firm, whose lawyers drove the ticket to Iowa Lottery headquarters on Grand Avenue in Des Moines 1 hour and 10 minutes before the ticket was to expire.
Since then, lottery officials have investigated how the ticket made it from a Des Moines convenience store into the hands of a 76-year-old lawyer living in Bedford, N.Y.
Lottery officials have said they will not award the prize until the person or persons behind the trust are revealed.
Iowa law requires a winner to give his name and address when claiming a prize. The winner does not have to make a public appearance or a public statement, though most have done so.
Lottery security personnel remain curious about why the jackpot went unclaimed for so long, Neubauer said.