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. Seriously?

    Hey FSU, get your money back while you can.

    January 28, 2011 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
  2. Eddie

    Cha-ching, Chungs!

    January 28, 2011 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  3. Rick McDaniel

    Seven years, is a very long time, to sort out a case of fraud.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
  4. Amber

    Um, sad to say that each man getting $2.1 million (and especially if that is before taxes) is hardly "set for life". If this man is very careful and invests it prudently, then yes, it is a good chunk of money that will help with that new baby's college, Mom and Dad's retirement, elder care for Mom and Dad, etc. but hardly means that the kid will be "set for life". Please be careful, sir, a million bucks isn't what it used to be.

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

      Canadians have a different approach to's not like the US where everybody spends more than they make. You truly speak about what you do not know. Have you ever been to Canada? Do you know any Canadians?

      January 28, 2011 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
    • CrazyCanuk

      Lottery winnings are tax free in Canada. What you win is what you get.

      January 28, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • CanBear67

      Sorry @GOTTHUMBS, Canadian household debt is at record levels, look it up. And $2 million? You could blow that on a nice house in Toronto, Vancouver or Calgary.

      I agree with Amber. Fortunately, CBC reported that none of these guys plans to retire yet and that's the smartest thing they could have said.

      January 28, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |

    Yet another example of Canadian Justice. Wish the US was as diligent when dealing with criminals. I'm getting so tired of the amount of crime,killings that go on here....I've considered moving back to Canada. I know no country is perfect, but believe me when I say...there are some serious differences between Canada and the US. In Canada, everyone has medial health care....and everyone contributes to it, based on their purchases. Obama has not made the US system better/equal. Its just robbing from those who have... My health insurance jumped this year...thanks to Obama. We need to implement a 2 – 3% national sales tax that goes only towards funding the Medicare system (fix the current holes in the system as well). Medical access could then be opened up to everyone whose company does not provide medical benefits. It would be a true national health care system that EVERYONE would contribute to.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
    • explainer to retards

      Buh-buy, have a safe trip home.

      January 28, 2011 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  6. ali baba

    stupid koreans

    January 28, 2011 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
  7. Really?

    You guys are all retarded on the dog years to human years ratio. A quick google shows that that theory was disproven a long time ago. Here is the chart put up by actual veterinarians.

    Age of Dog = "Human" Years
    5 months = 10 years
    8 months = 13 years
    10 months = 14 years
    1 year = 15 years
    2 years = 24 years
    3 years = 28 years
    4 years = 32 years
    5 years = 36 years
    6 years = 40 years
    7 years = 44 years
    8 years = 48 years
    9 years = 52 years
    10 years = 56 years
    11 years = 60 years
    12 years = 64 years
    13 years = 68 years
    14 years = 72 years
    15 years = 76 years
    16 years = 80 years
    17 years = 84 years
    18 years = 88 years
    19 years = 91 years
    20 years = 94 years
    21 years = 97 years
    22 years = 100 years
    23 years = 103 years
    24 years = 106 years

    January 28, 2011 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
    • KDW31

      Is this for your average size dog? Makes a difference in life expectancy. That said. It's just a saying, geez no need to get technical.

      January 28, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tricky Dick

    CNN got it wrong. They waited 49 dog years. But how many cat years is it? Woof!

    January 28, 2011 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
    • KDW31

      If they were a dog it would have been 49 years to them. But since they're human it was 7 which equals one dog year.

      January 28, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Peter

    Paid out in a TAX FREE lump sum.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:29 am | Report abuse |
  10. macjones

    What a great story. Will make a great movie. (Oh wait! ....correction: Cable TV movie)

    January 28, 2011 at 10:30 am | Report abuse |
  11. Cesar

    My dog therefore, is a 44 year old.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:31 am | Report abuse |
  12. boxtropolis

    Yes but you are all forgetting that this dog is Canadian. Which means it gets regular checkups, due to nationalized health. Which means statistically you can add 1/3 of a year onto each year in it's lifespan.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
  13. tuffyturf

    I feel sorry for all of Canada, have you been there lately? Talk about Asian Invasion, the "Chungs" are everywhere, and they are a scheming dishonest bunch too..I hope they pass strict immigration laws, and send all the Wang Chungs back to Hong Kong.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Maureen

      well that's very racist. of course it's not to mention the white dued who shot 9 people in Arizona. I mean looking at statistics, Asians are the best immigrants you can find cause of their low crime rate and high achievement rate. Don't use race for this. They happen to be Asian, but wrong-doing knows no racial bounds. they will go to jail.

      January 28, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • AmeriChina

      Wow...How much of YOUR country is owned by China???

      January 28, 2011 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  14. macmugsy

    Did anyone realize it was 7 men who played super 7 and it was 7 years ago?

    January 28, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Bagheera


      January 28, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Lizard

    In the U.S. you can self-check your ticket using a machine at the convenience store so you know if you're a winner before handing to the clerk. I would never hand my ticket to someone to check for me for this very reason. I've read numerous stories with this same scenario.

    January 28, 2011 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
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