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Investigators claim Calif. Lottery paying out jackpots it shouldn't to avoid bad press

California LotteryCalifornia Lottery: Investigators claim Calif. Lottery paying out jackpots it shouldn't to avoid bad press
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Includes video report

LOS ANGELES — Two California Lottery insiders claim the lottery sometimes chooses image over integrity.

CBS2's David Goldstein previously reported on a man who collected a nearly $2 million Powerball check, even though he said he lost the ticket.

And the chief Lottery investigator said in her report he couldn't provide substantial proof that he was the winner, which is required by law.

Insiders say it's not the first time that people have been paid when investigators say they shouldn't have. All, they say, to avoid bad publicity.

They produced a Lottery report of a San Francisco man who won a $750,000 Scratcher this year. According to the report, the investigator concluded that the claim be denied because there were conflicting statements in relation to who purchased and play the winning ticket.

But it was eventually determined the claim be paid even though it allegedly violated Lottery regulations.

And the Lottery sent out a press release announcing the new winner, never mentioning any conflicting statements.

They also claim the Lottery has taken a passive approach to cracking down on retailers who may be breaking the rules in order to avoid bad press.

They say one way to do it is known as "pinning", where retailers carefully scrape off the bar code on a Scratcher to see if it's a winner. If it's not, it goes back on the shelf and they try to sell it to unsuspecting players.

Helen Brean, the former chief Lottery investigators, was fired after filing an internal complaint about the $1.9 million Powerball winner who took home the prize after she alleged he didn't have substantial proof.

"They didn't really like us going out and doing a lot of enforcement," Brean said. "It was kind of, 'Keep everything quiet, we don't want people to think that ... there's any negative aspect to the Lottery."

Lottery officials in the case of the $750,000 Scratcher said the decision to pay the prize was based on the investigator's initial findings. The Lottery said it makes decisions regarding payment of prizes based on the law and the facts in each case.

VIDEO: Watch the report

v0LSRPxTmBYInvestigators claim Calif. Lottery paying out jackpots it shouldn't to avoid bad pressTwo California Lottery insiders claim the lottery sometimes chooses image over integrity.T03M07Shttps://img.youtube.com/vi/v0LSRPxTmBY/1.jpghttps://youtu.be/v0LSRPxTmBY2016-10-30T09:00:00-05:00

CBSLA, Lottery Post Staff

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34 comments. Last comment 1 month ago by Soledad.
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helpmewin's avatar - dandy
u$a
United States
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February 22, 2011
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Posted: October 30, 2016, 9:17 am - IP Logged

Wow i never knew all this was going on. Thanks for the Story.Smiley

Let it Snow Snowman

    mypiemaster's avatar - 2015021003pileofcash
    JACKPOT HUNTER

    United States
    Member #141034
    April 2, 2013
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    Posted: October 30, 2016, 9:22 am - IP Logged

    I've always said, "If you have a law/rule in the books that you are not willing to enforce uniformly, then take it off the books". This story has two sides though: if you genuinely lost your winning ticket, you pray that you get paid but if you are just a scammer, then this can potentially be a huge BONANZA.

    Seek and ye shall find -Matt. 7:7 ...Ask and ye shall receive -John 16:24 ...Give and it shall be given unto you -Luke 6:38 ...Be careful what you ask for!!! -Mypiemaster 1:1

    Having Money Solves Problems That Not Having Money Creates Yes Nod ****John Carlton****

      LottoAce's avatar - WWI Flying_Ace.gif
      N.C.
      United States
      Member #56005
      October 28, 2007
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      Posted: October 30, 2016, 9:37 am - IP Logged

      The lottery office should have stood thier ground. everyone knows that if
      you lose a ticket, you may lose a worthless piece of toilet paper, or you may
      lose millions.
      Can I sue N.C. for 110 million for not getting the MegaMillions game in our state?
      when I had the numbers...?....I don't think so.

      "know your limitations, but excede your expectations"

        music*'s avatar - nw bookeep.jpg
        Happy California
        United States
        Member #157856
        August 2, 2014
        1515 Posts
        Online
        Posted: October 30, 2016, 10:21 am - IP Logged

        The California Lottery wanted to avoid bad publicity. Now they have what they feared.

         The Governor should investigate the Lottery Board.  How high did this go?

         Another reason why I do not play scratchers, pinning. I only play PB & MM.

         

        Dance

         I've been rich and I've been poor. Believe me, rich is better. 

         Attributed to Joe E. Lewis and others

          Avatar

          United States
          Member #164725
          March 12, 2015
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          Posted: October 30, 2016, 10:34 am - IP Logged

          Correct me if Im wrong but the lottery immediately show up where the winning ticket was sold and takes the video. 

          If they know the time the winning ticket was sold and you are seen buying it, why wouldnt they give you the prize? I understand some video, actually digital, tape may not be clear. However the ones I've seen at my local 7/11 were in color and very clear. 

            noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
            Bay Area - California
            United States
            Member #136477
            December 12, 2012
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            Posted: October 30, 2016, 11:57 am - IP Logged

            l want to know more about that $1.9 mil payout without a ticket. We have been told time and time again" No ticket no payout." What changed? 

            People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

              whiteballz's avatar - Lottery-015.jpg
              Nutley, New Jersey
              United States
              Member #131058
              August 1, 2012
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              Posted: October 30, 2016, 11:58 am - IP Logged

              Correct me if Im wrong but the lottery immediately show up where the winning ticket was sold and takes the video. 

              If they know the time the winning ticket was sold and you are seen buying it, why wouldnt they give you the prize? I understand some video, actually digital, tape may not be clear. However the ones I've seen at my local 7/11 were in color and very clear. 

              They do know the time and place where the ticket was sold but there are problems that come up. Let's say there was a winning lottery ticket for a $500 million jackpot. The ticket was sold at 7/11 on Wednesday 6:35 PM.

              They look at the surveillance footage for someone buying a lottery ticket at 7/11 on Wednesday 6:35 PM but there are multiple people buying lottery tickets. Who do you award the money to? When lotto fever kicks in I've seen the lines at 7/11 go all the way down to the curb. I could easily imagine 100 tickets sold in a one minute period of time to more than one person. Some 7/11s even have 2 or 3 terminals that sell tickets that complicates the situation even more.

              Also how would anyone know the time on the surveillance footage is synchronized with the clock at the lottery headquarters? The record at the lottery headquarters shows when the winning ticket was bought but the time on the surveillance footage is off.

              No ticket. No money simple as that. The ticket should always be the bearer instrument. Allowing people to claim money without the ticket is just asking for fraud.

              .

                Avatar
                New Member
                Bellingham, WA
                United States
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                February 4, 2010
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                Posted: October 30, 2016, 12:22 pm - IP Logged

                US FlagAngryThey should clean house and replace all those who run the lottery!...This is a game for the people, by the people!!! And there is no other way to look at it....Fire them all....

                  Avatar

                  United States
                  Member #164725
                  March 12, 2015
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                  Posted: October 30, 2016, 12:39 pm - IP Logged

                  They do know the time and place where the ticket was sold but there are problems that come up. Let's say there was a winning lottery ticket for a $500 million jackpot. The ticket was sold at 7/11 on Wednesday 6:35 PM.

                  They look at the surveillance footage for someone buying a lottery ticket at 7/11 on Wednesday 6:35 PM but there are multiple people buying lottery tickets. Who do you award the money to? When lotto fever kicks in I've seen the lines at 7/11 go all the way down to the curb. I could easily imagine 100 tickets sold in a one minute period of time to more than one person. Some 7/11s even have 2 or 3 terminals that sell tickets that complicates the situation even more.

                  Also how would anyone know the time on the surveillance footage is synchronized with the clock at the lottery headquarters? The record at the lottery headquarters shows when the winning ticket was bought but the time on the surveillance footage is off.

                  No ticket. No money simple as that. The ticket should always be the bearer instrument. Allowing people to claim money without the ticket is just asking for fraud.

                  I buy my tickets at 6 am and no one is there. And if there is, they are not buying lotto tickets.    Banana

                  If as in your case scenario, if there are lines out the door, then there might be a problem. But not with mine. No No

                  Since everything is digitalised, the times on the recording equipment should be accurate. Also, they can test it when they seize the recording.  Hurray!

                   

                  Looking at the totality of the circumstances, if there is no doubt that someone purchased the winning ticket but lost it, they shd pay up!  Dance

                    psykomo's avatar - animal shark.jpg

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                    May 30, 2004
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                    Posted: October 30, 2016, 1:06 pm - IP Logged

                    Wow i never knew all this was going on. Thanks for the Story.Smiley

                    HMW......neither did anyone else I bet because, if it is not honestly reported we won't hear about it. You know no Kalie news corp's will inform the people on this won. Glad that Todd has a news forum in the LP!

                    THANKS:

                            Hurray!Hurray! LOTTERY POST NEWS  Hurray!Hurray!

                      LottoMetro's avatar - Lottery-024.jpg
                      Happyland
                      United States
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                      September 1, 2013
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                      Posted: October 30, 2016, 1:15 pm - IP Logged

                      I'm pretty sure cases like this, albeit perhaps not as high as $2 million, happen in nearly all states....especially the larger lotteries. They have a larger pool of unclaimed prize $$$$$ as well as larger marketing budgets to absorb instances like this. There are always "exceptions" made to supposedly hard rules in order to avoid bad publicity. Where I work, we make exceptions frequently because our clients are worth more in daily revenue than the amount we lose by making the exception.

                      I can see this backfiring if they honor a fraudulent claim, announce that individual as the winner, and then the true winner shows up to claim.

                      If the chances of winning the jackpot are so slim, why play when the jackpot is so small? Your chances never change, but the potential payoff does.
                      If a crystal ball showed you the future of the rest of your life, and in that future you will never win a jackpot, would you still play?

                      2016: -48.28% (13 tickets) ||
                      P&L % = Total Win($)/Total Wager($) - 1

                        Avatar

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                        Posted: October 30, 2016, 1:47 pm - IP Logged

                        Rules may be rules but there is also the concept of undue enrichment.  If there is sufficient evidence that the person bought the lost ticket, the lottery may want to avoid a court decision against them. 

                          noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                          Bay Area - California
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                          Posted: October 30, 2016, 2:45 pm - IP Logged

                          Calif. man knew he won $1M but lost the lottery ticket

                          A California Lottery winner lost out on the opportunity to claim his $1 million Powerball prize after he misplaced his ticket.

                          The man saw news reports about himself buying the ticket in Rosemead and came forward, saying he was the winner, KABC-TV reported.  But, he said, he lost his ticket.

                          Because Powerball rules require the winner to produce the actual winning ticket, he was ineligible to collect his winnings, California Lottery spokesman Alex Traverso said.

                          "We believe the man who came forward yesterday was the actual guy in the surveillance footage," Traverso said," but unfortunately, in Powerball rules, you have to have a physical ticket to win.".....BS

                          People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                            whiteballz's avatar - Lottery-015.jpg
                            Nutley, New Jersey
                            United States
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                            August 1, 2012
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                            Posted: October 30, 2016, 3:49 pm - IP Logged

                            I buy my tickets at 6 am and no one is there. And if there is, they are not buying lotto tickets.    Banana

                            If as in your case scenario, if there are lines out the door, then there might be a problem. But not with mine. No No

                            Since everything is digitalised, the times on the recording equipment should be accurate. Also, they can test it when they seize the recording.  Hurray!

                             

                            Looking at the totality of the circumstances, if there is no doubt that someone purchased the winning ticket but lost it, they shd pay up!  Dance

                            Without the ticket there will always be doubt.

                            .