Lottery officials: Rightful winners of '03 jackpot getting paid
January 27th, 2011
11:14 PM ET

Lottery officials: Rightful winners of '03 jackpot getting paid

Canadian lottery officials say they’ve finally awarded to the correct people a 2003 multimillion-dollar jackpot that authorities say was fraudulently claimed by a lottery retailer’s relative.

Seven men who played Canada’s Super 7 lottery together in December 2003 were awarded a $12.5 million jackpot plus $2.35 million in interest after being declared the rightful winners, the Toronto Star reported. Each will receive $2.1 million.

“It’s a little surreal,” one of the men, Joseph Reaman, 35, of Ridgeville, Ontario, said at a news conference introducing the winners, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. “I got a baby on the way, and he’s pretty much set for life.”

The correction comes after three members of a family - two of whom worked for a Burlington, Ontario, lottery outlet – were charged last year on suspicion of stealing the winning ticket, according to the CBC.

An investigation by lottery officials and provincial police revealed that one of the seven rightful winners bought a Super 7 ticket at a store in October 2003 in St. Catharines, Ontario. The buyer redeemed the ticket later at the outlet in Burlington and wasn’t told that he won a free ticket, investigators determined, according to the CBC.

That ticket went on to win a $12.5 million jackpot. It was claimed by Kathleen Chung, sister and daughter of men who worked at the outlet.

A lottery investigator learned that Chung was a relative of retailers Kenneth Chung and Jun-Chul Chung, but the lottery paid her because it couldn’t prove wrongdoing, the CBC reported.

After the CBC’s “Fifth Estate” program profiled Chung – with Chung claiming not being able to remember where she bought the ticket - provincial police investigated the case and determined that the outlet didn’t give the free ticket to its rightful owner, leading to last year’s charges, which include theft and fraud, according to the CBC.

Further investigation led authorities to determine the prize belongs to the seven men who were awarded Thursday. The men were co-workers in the construction business in 2003, the Star reported.

“After more than seven long years, the right prize is going to the right people,” a beaming Ontario Lottery and Gaming Commission chair Paul Godfrey said Thursday, according to the Star.

The Chungs are free on bail as they await trial, the Star and the CBC reported.

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Filed under: Canada • Crime
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. sophistocat

    the Tilman story interest you ...it's a movie now ...Friendly Fire by US MORONS with Guns

    January 28, 2011 at 5:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Nightmare

      FU and this is your sign, ..l..

      January 28, 2011 at 6:41 am | Report abuse |
  2. Bella

    Funny...Canadians always have something to say about an American doing something wrong.
    Ya know what they say about people who live in glass houses. lol
    "oh canada, oh canada"..........WAKE UP!!!

    January 28, 2011 at 6:33 am | Report abuse |
    • John Not

      "What they say about Canadian's who live in Glass Houses?"

      Don't invite any American's over.

      January 28, 2011 at 6:48 am | Report abuse |
    • FuriousGeorge

      canada has a severe case of penis envy

      January 28, 2011 at 8:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Sherri

      Actually we have sore stomachs from laughing at the Americans. Lots of jokes to make.

      January 28, 2011 at 8:48 am | Report abuse |
    • jimmy

      Like a tree falling in the woods, if a Canadian laughs, does anyone hear it?

      January 28, 2011 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Frank

      Canada...America's hat.

      January 28, 2011 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Andre

      I'd prefer every lotto ticket in Canada be stolen — and investigated successfully! — than deal with a country without health care, critical social services, relatively sane politics and the absence of an oppressive lobby of religious fundamentalists.

      January 28, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • CanadianErin

      America, Canada's underwear.

      January 28, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tika8220

      Frank: So what does that make Mexico?

      January 28, 2011 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dual Citizen

      It always amazes how negative Canadians are toward their neighbors. I've lived in the U.S. for 15 years and have heard nothing but nice things from Americans towards Canada and it's citizens. I never hear anything nice the other way around – and I'm a Canadian! Sad!

      January 28, 2011 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • CanadianErin

      Dual, I think the banter is going both ways here. I am a Canadian (living in Canada) and I hear both good and bad remarks about our neighbors, no different than some Americans say about us. Does it bother me, no. When I add remarks does it mean that I dislike Americans, no. Much of what is written here is funny, lighten up.

      January 28, 2011 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • kickstand

      I like Americans, on an individual basis. Collectively, especially politically when it comes to issues like providing medical care to everybody, they don't make much sense. But as individuals, I've met lots of fun, intelligent Americans.

      January 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Tom

    Blame Canada...

    January 28, 2011 at 6:37 am | Report abuse |
  4. Rita

    If it happened in the US, Liberals would be asking how much of this money they get.

    January 28, 2011 at 6:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      Just a note about Canadian lottery games, all winnings in games are tax free, unlike US lotteries.

      January 28, 2011 at 7:36 am | Report abuse |
  5. Me Too

    There was a version of lottery in CA where if you picked three of six numbers correctly you won $5.00. And they added a bonus game for a while that when you redeemed a $5.00 winner, you could win $200,000. You knew you won if a "little tune" played when they ran your ticket through the machine. My bad - I didn't know about the bonus game. Redeemed by ticket. The clerk asked me if I had signed my ticket. No. She reached into her purse, gave me $5.00 and promptly took the $200,000 for herself - at least it seemed so. Don't be dumb like me and lose to less than honest clerks. This was at a Safeway store in Alameda, CA. I figured out what happened about a week later after talking with another clerk at another store who explained the "little tune" game to me. Sad that people do this sort of thing. Where are our values?

    January 28, 2011 at 6:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Almighty$

      You'll see this at casinos too. Little old ladies getting conned into leaving their winning slot machines to flag down an attendant while a helpful soul "watches" the machine for them.

      January 28, 2011 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  6. Big Moose

    Lottery is a rig anyway,they send big lottery scratchoff winners to parts of the state where its mainly wealthy people at already.I had a friend work in a lottery buildin' delivery their supplys to stores,he knew about it.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:21 am | Report abuse |
    • FuriousGeorge

      Tinfoil hat a little tight this am?

      January 28, 2011 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
  7. TEddybar

    i thought only mexicans won the lottery...

    January 28, 2011 at 7:47 am | Report abuse |
  8. Joe The Politician

    cling clang klung, I won!

    January 28, 2011 at 7:52 am | Report abuse |
    • FuriousGeorge

      ching, chang, CHUNG...no you didn't!

      January 28, 2011 at 8:39 am | Report abuse |
  9. Thatguy371

    Throw the book at the jerks! Always some loser trying to scam the system.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:53 am | Report abuse |
  10. Colin H

    Slow news day? Boring, incomplete story. Come on CNN, really?

    January 28, 2011 at 8:04 am | Report abuse |
  11. harry

    do the chungs still have the money? Will the lottery pay them all the money, then worry about getting it back from the chungs? was it a lump sum or a monthly payment (that will now stop). did the lottery lose money somewhere. I assumed the real owners never knew plus somewhere along the line they put their addresses somewhere?

    January 28, 2011 at 8:08 am | Report abuse |
  12. takc

    my dog could care less

    January 28, 2011 at 8:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Sammy

      Your dog COULDN'T care less . . .

      January 28, 2011 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
    • FuriousGeorge

      @sammy
      "couldn't care less" means he cares
      'doh!

      January 28, 2011 at 8:41 am | Report abuse |
    • MATH MAJOR FSU

      Could care less = the dog does not care..................if he could NOT care less = he cares

      January 28, 2011 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
    • durrrr

      @ furious: you are wrong. "could care less" means you still care, moron.

      January 28, 2011 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
    • durrrr

      2 both you morons now: "could care less" means you aren't at the lowest point of caring. Which means, you still have "care" left in you and could care less if you so chose. "couldn't care less" means you have hit the bottom level of caring and cannot care any less than you already do. Morons.

      January 28, 2011 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Takc's Dog

      I do not care, so therefore all your points are moot. Woof.

      January 28, 2011 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  13. Bgg1175

    2.1 mil is set for life? Maybe 150 years ago! Theyll all blow it in less than 3 years!

    January 28, 2011 at 8:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Croberts

      2mil at 2% interest a year = $3333 a month. Surely a person can live off that "for life". With a better investment, you can get more than 2%. Also in Canada, the lotto winnings are Tax Free.

      January 28, 2011 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Albert Einstein

    To all those debating about dog-year math: according to my theory of general relativity CNN is correct: 1 dog year = 7 human years. However, the paradox is that if you are a dog, it would seem like 49 years to you. I checked the rules of the lottery and it turnes out that dogs are not allowed to collect from it. So whoever claims waiting 49 years, stop barking, it wasn't you who was waiting.
    To CA Immigration: can I apply for CA citizenship based on my contribution to the science?

    January 28, 2011 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Seriously?

      So every 7 years - according to your theory - your dog has one birthday, right? Someone asks you how old your dog is, you don't say: "7 year ... or 49 in dog years" ... you say "he's 7 ... or 1 in dog years", right? Just so we can be clear here.

      January 28, 2011 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Chopswell

      Here's what I say. My dog was born in Oct. 2008. Last Oct., she turned TWO. Next Oct., she'll be THREE. The earth goes around the sun at exactly the same speed for my dog as it does for me. 1 year (dog) = 1 year (me). Case Closed. Dogs live on average 8-12 years.

      January 28, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Mike O

    CHUNG....No F'in Wonder..................

    January 28, 2011 at 8:30 am | Report abuse |
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