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. julio

    i dont like fu$&$3%%& dogss,cats i hate ! Free kalimba q kares lotto

    January 28, 2011 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  2. bernadette

    That's fabulous they were able to resolve this wrongdoing. They need to have designated lottery stores. Too many owners are stealing from the lottery players.

    January 28, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  3. CanadianLottoFollower

    @Eric ... they used human investigation and a complicated computer search algorithm to check ticket purchasing patterns and then compared this to the list of about 650 people that responsed that it "MIGHT" have been them based on purchase and redemption locations. This lead them to figure out who the winners most likely were.

    January 28, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
  4. Dog years

    This is a very fishy story, so they won a free ticket. how the hell did the winning ticket was conneceted to a ticket worth 14 million, all that the store stole was a price of one ticket a dollar, how could the vendor know that a free ticket that will have a draw a day later is a winning ticket he could awe them or given them a ticket any ticket???? for me he stlole a dollar got a ticket and won Duh

    January 28, 2011 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Canuck

      I don't know how it works there, but in Canada, when the retailer scans the barcode of the ticket, and it comes up as a free ticket, you don't get a dollar to buy another one, the machine automatically prints your free ticket. It would have been very easy to figure out what happened.

      January 28, 2011 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Alex

    Wow, Asian people trying to rip you off – no way!

    January 28, 2011 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  6. myklds

    To all Math Wizard...I read "dog years" in the article no more. Maybe Jason has altered it for your convenience. hit it on your first post but I could hardly believe how you terribly missed on the second. Your second post has just completely contradicted your first.

    Simple Math: 1 dog year was referred to the "average" life span of most ordinary breed. Don't be a genius to compare it with humans coz it's immaterial and has nothing but less relevance as far as the phrase and the entire article is concern.

    January 28, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mr.Vick

    F* ck dogs and Canada

    January 28, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • AmeriChina

      Enjoy the debt!

      January 28, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. the_dude

    Remeber lying, cheating, stealing....these are all daily norms in the 3rd world. Remeber that when dealing with these people.

    January 28, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Edward

    There is not enough information in that story to determine if the correct person(s) were awarded the lottery jackpot.

    January 28, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Robert

    What happened here?

    January 28, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • explainer to robert

      Nothing, go back to sleep

      January 28, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  11. equus

    This is the most entertainment that I have experienced in a long time. Great comedic fodder...who knew that Canadians were so funny?

    January 28, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Bagheera

    ABOUT THIS DOG'S YEAR THING: I'm assuming by "dog's year" the writer is referring to how much said dog ages in the course of one human year. Said dog would age 7 dog years in the span of one human year.

    Think of it another way. A "dog's year" refers to what happens in the life and times of a dog during one human calendar year. He might get 10 bones during that year. He might bark over 5000 times in that year, AND he also ages 7 dog years in the span of that year.

    HOWEVER, if a "dog's year" refers to time in dog years, then the human time span equivalent would be about 52 human days for one dog year...making the writer a complete buffoon. He's probably a buffoon anyway for writing such an ambiguous caption...which is probably why CNN has already changed the link from "dog's year" to "7 years."

    January 28, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Bagheera

    Cha Chung!!!

    January 28, 2011 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • 8088

      HA HA HA !!! thats a funny one !

      January 28, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  14. ScottyBudLite

    That's why I always check my numbers online myself. We had a retailer in California who wrongfully told a customer he'd only won $5 on Fantasy Five. The customer had actually won the Fantasy Five jackpot, worth hundreds of thousands. The clerk was caught while trying to claim the prize and sent to jail, and the rightful winner was given his winnings. Always check your tickets yourself!

    January 28, 2011 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  15. CNN Sucks

    Terrible website. One step up from Ebaums World in content and functionality.

    January 28, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
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