Six lottery vendors admit theft in sting operation


In Minnesota, six lottery ticket retailers have admitted guilt and been convicted on charges of trying to claim customers' ticket wins as their own, reports the Pioneer Press. Three were convicted of felonies, and three received one-year suspended sentences, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety reported this week.

Authorities arrested a total of eight people during the compliance checks, part of a sting operation conducted by Minnesota State Lottery security officials and agents from the Alcohol and Gambling Enforcement Division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety in December 2008 and January 2009.

Pioneer Press reports that undercover agents made unannounced store visits, where they presented specially constructed lottery tickets that looked like winners and asked the clerks to verify if they were winning tickets. Of the 186 stores visited, clerks at five stores did not return the ticket to the agent....instead trying to claim the prize later at lottery headquarters.

Jaideep Singh, Asgaralli Ali and Jairam Shiwmangal were convicted of felony lottery fraud and conspiracy and received varying sentences, whilst Majdi Almadien, Susan Hanna, andHarpreet Virk each received a one-year diversion.

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