$6.42 Million Just Doesn’t Go As Far As It Used To I Guess

by Donald Hanson • March 17, 2012 • Newsy JerseyComments (0)1461

For most people, $6.42 Million, or whatever the amount is after taxes, would be more than they would ever need. But not Americo Lopes.Lopes worked at a New Jersey construction company where he would routinely take part in lottery pools with co-workers going back to 2007. In 2009 he  claimed a Mega-Millions jackpot of $38.5 Million. Apparently his $6.42 Million cut (before taxes) was not enough and he needed the full $38.5 Million for himself. I guess he is preparing for the collapse of the dollar or maybe he’s planning on financing his own movie.

When confronted by co-workers, he said that he purchased the winning numbers on his own, not as part of the company pool. Of course the five co-workers sued him. The co-workers say that they gave Lopes the money to buy the tickets on the same day that he purchased the winning ticket. The jury believed them and awarded each co-worker a pre-tax $2 Million from the jackpot. After the verdict came down, Lopes continued to protest saying that he had been robbed.

Every once and awhile, you hear one of these types of stories in the news.  Unfortunately, they are always missing the information you would need to tell who is right. For example, lets say that they each put in $10 and they bought 60 chances. Are all 60 number combinations accounted for on the xeroxes that you would commonly make at the workplace so that everyone can check the numbers at the time of the drawing. If so and he had another ticket, then I don’t know how there can be any confusion.

Did they stupidly let him purchase the tickets without getting a copy of the numbers so they could check them when the drawing was held. If they didn’t, then he could have simply bought extras and then say that the winning numbers were on one of the ones he bought for himself. On the other hand, what kind of person would buy extra tickets for themselves? The whole idea behind a lottery pool at a workplace is that you can multiply your chances greatly and the jackpot is so big that sharing it doesn’t matter because you still get a huge amount of money. So why the need for the extra tickets?

Even though the information should have all been there to make a conclusive decision, the co-workers were given less of a share then he was and no one really got in trouble. Frankly, if the co-workers were right and he tried to skip out with their money then he should be in jail because he is a thief. If the co-workers are lying or wrong about the winning ticket being part of the pool, then they should be in big trouble for false litigation and fraud. But as usual, even though the news reported the story to us, they either didn’t have or didn’t tell us the necessary information to understand what really happened.

Article on the Lopes cheating his co-workers out of a $38.5 Million lottery jackpot  

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