No Jail for Lottery Fraudster
A shop worker who tried to defraud a lottery syndicate out of a prize worth £79,887 has been given a 12 months suspended jail sentence. Imran Pervais, who lives in Kent, was working at his family’s convenience store when the incident took place. Callum Crosier, who leads a syndicate of players at his workplace, asked Pervais to check their tickets. Pervais did so, but when it became apparent that a significant prize had been won, he told Mr Crosier that it was worth just £10.
Mr Crosier didn’t feel that he had any need to doubt the shop worker, so he took the winnings as stated. It was only later that he went through the syndicate numbers personally and realised that there had been a mistake, so he returned to the store. Instead of helping the player to find the tickets that had been processed, Mr Crosier was left to search through bin bags himself. Eventually the winning ticket was found to be hidden by wooden plinths behind the counter.
Pervais was arrested in June 2012 and he was found guilty at Maidstone Crown Court in March 2013. He has now been handed a 12 months suspended sentence, and Judge David Griffiths-Jones QC described his actions as ‘especially mean-spirited.’
‘That the win was in excess of £50,000 would have been apparent to you as you processed the tickets, or at least that a substantial win would have been apparent to you, but you told Mr Crosier that he had won £10,’ Judge Griffiths-Jones remarked.
‘No doubt planning to wait in the hope that he would be content and would accept this small sum, perhaps even be glad of it, so that when you could see that there would be no repercussions you would be able to claim the prize for yourself.
‘The offence, whilst opportunistic, was, as it seems to me, especially mean-spirited.’
The licence to sell National Lottery tickets has already been withdrawn from Moores Convenience Store, and lottery officials clarified the high expectations they have of retailers in a statement, saying: ‘We expect each and every one of our retailers to act as an advocate for, and uphold the values of, the National Lottery. If a retailer falls short of what is expected of them and what they agree to as part of their signed, contractually-binding National Lottery Retailer Agreement, we have robust processes in place to deal with that.’
We are pleased that Mr Crosier and his winning syndicate discovered the attempted fraud before it was too late, and we hope they enjoy every penny of their £79,887 prize. We would also like to advise all players to check all tickets personally. Use our free Lottery Checker tool and you can check your numbers automatically against the full database of results for the last 180 days, leaving you free to make any claim required without delay.
Written by Tony SharpeWednesday 8th May 2013
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