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Keep an Eye on Your Office Lottery Tickets

By Rachelle Bowden in News on Dec 14, 2005 6:41PM

If you're one of those offices that pools your money together to buy lottery tickets, you might want to make sure the person who goes in to check to see if you won big is someone who actually pooled in for the ticket. A group of traders at the Chicago Board of Options Exchange learned that lesson the hard way.

2005_12_megamillions.jpgLaura Deal was convicted of felony theft and faces 15 years in prison for stealing a winning lottery ticket. Prosecutors say she was checking lottery tickets for a group of CBOE traders when the store clerk pointed out one was a winner. And a big winner. $175,000 big. So, like any honest person would do, Deal pocketed the ticket, even though she wasn't one of the 16 people who chipped in for the ticket.

The actual winning ticket's never been found and the defense says that Deal never tried to cash the ticket and that one of the traders might have lost it. But several witnesses, including the owner of the shop where she was checking the tickets, say that Deal got hugs and high-fives when she was told one of the tickets she had was worth $175k. Then when she got back to the office she conveniently forgot to mention the win. It took the jury only 2 hours to convict her.