Washington DC Lottery Scammer Arrested

A Washington DC-area man has been arrested in Brunswick County Florida under a $1 Million bond for using a lottery scam to swindle tens of thousands of dollars from a Florida woman.

A detective for the Sunset Beach Police Department says Olanrewaju Aju Thomas, 30, contacted the victim through Facebook and said she had won $250,000 in an alleged Washington, DC lottery.

Thomas allegedly told the victim that to claim a prize she had to pay shipping, shipping insurance, tax and an IRS fee to claim a prize.

The victim reported the fraud and Thomas was caught after they executed a search of his bank records.

Thomas was charged with 4 counts each of obtaining property by false pretense, accessing a computer by means of fraud, exploiting an older adult and felony conspiracy.

Detectives were able to recover some of the money the victim lost in the scam.

**FreeLotto Pro Tip: Never pay money to claim prizes.  To learn more about scams and how to protect yourself, visit our site.


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A Chicago Bus Driver wins $2 Million with a Scratch-Off

Roy Pitman, 71, from Chicago, a recently retired transit authority bus driver, won $2 Million.

Pitman was riding the bus home after picking up the Illinois Lottery $2,000,000 Jumbo Bucks instant ticket.  During his commute, he started scratching, and was shocked to discover he won!  “I started shaking,” he said, shocked to be the grand prize winner.

Pittman has some advice for anyone who wants to win big; “try a ticket, because you never know.”  He plans on sharing his new wealth with his family and donating to charity.

Congratulations on your BIG win, Mr. Pitman.  We hope you and your family enjoy your great fortune.

The Powerball may be Coming to Alabama

Governor Robert Bentley announced that he plans to call a special legislative session to discuss the possibility of allowing Powerball lottery ticket sales. Lottery sales would help create revenue to resolve some of the ongoing state budget issues.

Alabama is one of 6 states that outlawed the Powerball. Other states include: Nevada, Atlanta, Mississippi, Utah, Alaska, and Hawaii.

The possibility of Alabama having a state lottery certainly has everyone talking! Many residents have expressed excitement about no longer having to make long drives to other states to purchase their tickets.

We think it’s great that lottery sales will help raise money for the state and are excited to see Alabamians playing the Powerball.  If you live in Alabama, be sure to tell us what you think in our comments section!

3 People Charged in Scratch-Off Lottery Ticket Theft Case

3 individuals from Iowa were arrested and charged in theft of a lottery scratch-off ticket.

Ashley Brianne Bosler, 20, Johnny Long, Jr., 26, Sally Bosler, 42, were all charged in association with the theft of an instant-scratch game. No word on whether or not the stolen ticket was a winner! The game has a prize of a $250,000 prize that has not been paid out.

The investigation was carried out by the Iowa Division of Criminal Justice and the Buena Vista County Attorney Office.

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New Mexico Launches “Play at the Pump,” a New Way to Play the Lottery

New Mexico just approved a brand new way to play the lottery.  “Play at the Pump” allows you to play the lottery while you fill up your car.

This new game gives players who swipe their credit cards the ability to purchase and play lottery games while they’re pumping gas.  Players may provide their phone numbers to receive Quick Pick numbers and win notifications straight to their cellphones.

The company responsible for this new style of games, Linq3, has automated gas pump stations where games such as the Powerball and Mega Millions can be purchased!

Powerball Jackpot hit $478 Million – 8th biggest prize in US history!

Nobody won the Powerball on Wednesday July 27th, so the jackpot mushroomed to a whopping $478 million dollars!

Officials say that makes it the fifth largest prize in the game’s history and the eighth-biggest prize ever in the United States.

The drawing for $478 million was held on Saturday, July 30th. There was a single grand prize winner in New Hampshire.

The winning numbers for Saturday were 11, 17, 21, 23, 32, and the Powerball was 5.

The winner has the option of receiving $478 million if spread over 30 years, or a lump-sum payment of $330.6 million taxes.

Because there was a jackpot winner that means the drawing on Wednesday, August 3 will be worth $40 million with a cash option of $28.1 million.

Either way, $40 million is still a hefty prize!  FreeLotto wants to know, will you be playing?

To win cash you need to be organized

Shark Tank’s Mark Cuban Gives 6 Great Tips for Lottery Winners

Mark Cuban, Billionaire, Shark Tank star, and Dallas Mavericks owner, has 6 starter tips for anyone who wins the lottery. FreeLotto players, listen up! Here they are:

  1. Hire a tax attorney.
  2. Don’t take your prize money as a lump sum because you don’t want to blow through all of it.
  3. If you weren’t happy yesterday, you won’t be happy because of the lottery. It’s money not happiness.
  4. If you were happy, you’re going to be a lot happier because life is easier when you don’t have to worry about bills.
  5. Your friends and relatives will ask for money, but you should tell them no. If you are close to them, you will already know their struggles.  If you do help them, be sure to talk to your accountant beforehand.  No one needs $1 million or even $100,000 for anything.
  6. You don’t become a smart investor just because you’ve won the lottery. Instead, Cuban recommends you put your money in the bank where you know you won’t lose it.

13 Unluckiest Lottery Winners

Winning the lottery might seem like a dream come true, but to some lotto winners, the money is simply a nightmare.  In honor of Friday the 13th we’ve compiled a list of the 13 Unluckiest Lotto Winners.

1) Denise Rossi won $1.3 Million after playing the California lottery and kept it a secret from her husband, divorcing him 2 days later.  Her husband was shocked as he says that they had a very happy and loving marriage.  Still, he agreed to the divorce.  Denise told no one in her divorce case about the big win, but it wouldn’t remain a secret forever.  When her ex-husband, Thomas Rossi, learned about her secret, he filed a lawsuit and won!  A family court judge ruled that she had violated disclosure laws and awarded every penny to her ex-husband.  Denise was left with nothing!

2) Andrew Jack Whitaker, a millionaire and owner of a successful construction company, Andrew won a $315 Million Powerball Jackpot in West Virginia.   He donated 10 percent of his fortune to Christian charities, $14 million to his Jack Whittaker Foundation, and even gave a house, a new Truck, and $50,000 in cash to the woman who sold him the winning ticket.  Unfortunately, Jack’s fortune didn’t last.  Beset by legal difficulties and personal problems, he began drinking heavily and frequenting strip clubs.  A string of robberies took place where thieves stole cash from his car and even his bank accounts.  Later his granddaughter and her boyfriend died from a drug overdose.  His own daughter also passed away 5 years after.  Whitaker is allegedly broke now and faces several lawsuits.  He says he wishes he had just torn up that winning ticket.

3) Abraham Shakespeare won the $30 Million Jackpot in Florida.  He was generous with his winnings and gave money away to anyone who asked for it.  He was quickly losing money as a result, but his newfound friend Dee Dee Moore promised to help him manage what was left of it.  Moore felt like the fortune would be better handled without Shakespeare altogether and killed him.  She is currently serving a sentence of life in prison without parole.

4) Michael Carroll won 9.7 Million euros (about $15.5 Million) in the “Lotto Lout” in England.  At the age of 19, he quite literally spent his money on hookers and cocaine.  He was allegedly smoking more than $3,000 worth of crack cocaine daily, hiring thousands of hookers, and regularly throwing indulgent parties at his $500,000 home.  His bad habits drove away his wife and daughter.  His fortune also ended 8 years later and although he said he doesn’t have a dime to his name, he claims to prefer it.  A year after claiming that he was content without the money, Carroll attempted suicide.

5) Evelyn Basehore won the $3.9 Million Pick Six Jackpot and just 5 months later won $1.4 Million in the same game!  With her incredible luck, she gave away a chunk of her money to friends and family, but lost much of it due to uncontrollable spending and a bad gambling addiction.  She said winning the lottery wasn’t as great as she’d imagined because everyone wanted something from her.  Evelyn has her fortune and now resides in a trailer park in New Jersey.  She admits to still playing.  Can luck strike a 3rd time?

6) Tonda Lynn won $10 Million in Alabama after a customer gave her a lottery ticket as a tip.  This regular customer often tipped the waiters at his local Waffle House with lottery tickets, hoping that one of them might win.  All of Tonda’s coworkers promised to share their winnings if they scored big.  When she finally won, greed got the better of her, and she decided not to share.  Her coworkers sued her in hopes of getting their share, but they lost the lawsuit and Tonda was allowed to keep her fortune.  Despite this, she still squandered her money on a bad corporation and was forced to pay $1 Million in taxes.  She has no money now and reportedly works at a Waffle House.

7) Jeffrey Dampier won $20 Million in the Illinois lottery and was generous enough to share it with his family and friends by giving them gifts and lavish vacations.  Unfortunately, greed got the better of his sister-in-law and her boyfriend who wanted a little more.  They murdered Jeffrey in pursuit of his money.  Jeffrey’s widow says she’s afraid to go near the lottery ever since.

8) Billie Bob Harrell Jr finally felt lucky after winning $31 Million in the Texas Lotto.  His family was poor and prior to winning the lotto, he moved around minimum wage jobs to make ends meet.  After the win, things started out well enough when Harell took his family on vacation to Hawaii, donated thousands of dollars to charity, purchased houses and cars for loved ones, and even gave 500 turkeys to the poor.  All seemed well, but his wife left him less than a year after winning and he started to receive phone calls threatening his life.  He says he wishes he’d never won.

9) Urooj Khan won $1 Million from a scratch-off in Chicago.  As an immigrant from India, it seemed that he would finally start living the American Dream.  He immediately gave the cashier who sold him the lucky ticket $100 and promised him more after he cashed in his winnings.  Khan celebrated the lucky win over dinner with his family.  Unfortunately, he died that same night before cashing in the win.  At first it was believed that he died of natural causes, hardening of the arteries, but his brother pressed for an autopsy which revealed that he actually died from cyanide poisoning.  No one knows who is responsible for his death.  His wife and daughter received the $1 Million instead.

10) Hung Nguyen purchased a winning $1 Million Powerball ticket in California.  Nguyen, a hardworking car mechanic and father, traveled to Vietnam after purchasing his ticket.  Unaware of his good fortune, he stayed in Vietnam for several months.  Video footage of Nguyen at a convenience store was even released in an attempt to locate him, but to no avail.  After returning to the United States and with little time to claim the money he desperately searched for the ticket but didn’t find it in time.  The money was donated to California schools instead.

11) Callie Rogers, a 16-year-old from Britain won $3 Million!  Although she indulged in purchasing designer clothes and breast implants for herself, she was also generous with her fortune.  She showered her friends and family with gifts by buying them homes, cars, and taking them on vacations.  A drug-addiction, bankruptcy and poverty struck too soon.  Rogers has attempted suicide twice, works 3 jobs and lives with her mother.  She says she only wanted to do nice things for people, but people were only interested in her for her money.

12) Iby Roncaioli and husband Joseph Rancaioli won $5 Million.  Since her husband was a doctor, they already lived comfortably and it was assumed that the money would be well-handled.  Iby managed the family’s finances, so surely she could manage the lotto winnings.  Unfortunately, Iby’s husband poisoned her with a drug-cocktail in hopes of keeping the money himself.  He later realized that Iby had her own dirty secrets and had forged documents to transfer ownership of the home to her name.  Even more shocking is the fact that there was no lottery money left.  After killing Iby, her husband learned that she gave some away to family and squandered the rest on gambling.

13) David Lee Edwards won the $27 Million jackpot in Florida and spent his winnings lavishly.  Edwards, a former drug addict and felon, purchased many great things: a $1.6 million house in Palm Beach Gardens, three race horses, a fiber optics company, a Lear Jet, a limo business, and a $200,000 Lamborghini. Unfortunately, his spending didn’t stop there.  He also spent his wealth on heroin and cocaine which led to a deep drug addiction.  He was charged multiple times for drugs and quickly lost his fortune.  He died in poverty several years later when his body was discovered in a storage unit, covered in his own feces.

New Yorkers Spend a Record-Breaking $10 Billion on Lottery and Slots

Lottery sales skyrocketed with this fiscal year’s lottery revenue hitting almost $10 Billion—a new record in both state lottery tickets and electronic gaming machine sales.  According to New York’s gaming commission, the New York lottery continues to be the most profitable lottery in North America with $9.7 Billion in revenue coming from lottery tickets and scratch-offs and nearly $2 Billion coming from video lottery terminals.

Data for revenue was collected from the fiscal year ending in March 2016.

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Harriet Tubman Replacing Andrew Jackson on the $20 Bill

It’s official!  After much debate about adding a woman’s face to U.S. currency, an official decision by the U.S. Department of Treasury has been made.   Harriet Tubman will replace Andrew Jackson as the new face of the $20 Bill.

Andrew Jackson was the 7th president of the United States and is seen by some as a war hero for defeating the British in New Orleans during the war of 1812.

Harriet Tubman was born a slave in 1885 and became well-known for her efforts leading the Underground Railroad to bring many slaves to freedom.  She will be the first African American, as well as the first woman, featured on U.S. currency.

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Jamaican Man wins $45 Million Jackpot but Can’t Afford to Eat

Michael McLean from St. Thomas, Jamaica and winner of the $45 Million Jackpot says that he is struggling to make ends meet.  McLean says that all that is left from his 2004 winnings is an unfinished eight-bedroom mansion and a Chevrolet Avalanche.  McLean states that he has no money to buy food on a regular basis and is considering selling his Chevy to rebuild his finances.

Although he squandered his winnings, McLean continues to buy lotto tickets in hopes of winning the jackpot again.  We wish him the best of luck and hope that if he gets lucky again, he’ll be more precautious.

Unclaimed $2 Million Powerball in Wisconsin

One lucky Wisconsin Powerball player is holding a $2 million ticket from the Saturday, March 26th Powerball drawing.  Saturday’s winning Powerball numbers were 11, 23, 42, 52 and 68 with a Powerball of 6.  The Power Play number was 3.

The winner matched five out of five numbers, but not the Power ball.  The player also chose the Power Play option, which automatically increases their winnings to $2 million!  The $2,000,000 Powerball ticket was sold at Cardinal Service at 805 Cardinal Lane in Hartland.  The winner has 180 days to claim their prize.  The next Powerball drawing will be held on Wednesday, March 30th.  The jackpot is estimated at $116 million.

How the North Carolina Educational Lottery Has Hurt Education

When North Carolina approved the first ever statewide lottery, known as “The North Carolina Education Lottery”, former governor Mike Easley promised that lottery sales would bring in “half-a-billion annually for education.”  Sounds great, right?  Too bad the state has done absolutely nothing to increase the money spent on education.  In fact, North Carolina now spends less on education than it did before the lottery was established in 2005.

The government lied to lottery players and schools by imposing permanent cuts in education funding and then filling those same cuts by using lottery funds.  This means that instead of providing extra money for education, they actually take away the money that is already in place and use the lottery earnings to replace it.  This has been a terrible mistake!  Over time they have also lessened the amount they’re replacing, so the schools get less money than they had to start.

Public school districts across the state are losing more and more permanent funding as lawmakers refuse to keep pace with inflation. School districts are being forced into difficult situations, where they either have to raise local taxes to make up the difference, or cut services and close schools.  The lottery money that was supposed to help fund programs such as college scholarships and pre-kindergarten programs is single-handedly decreasing the funding and in many cases shutting down the programs altogether.

Happy Holidays from FreeLotto

Happy Holidays to our loyal FreeLotto players and newsletter readers from all of us at the FreeLotto team!

We wish each of you a happy and healthy New Year! Be sure to keep up with all the 2016 lottery stories and news (like Wednesday’s Powerball results!) on our blog.

The first FreeLotto winner of 2016 could be you…

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Dutch Judge Rules Ex-Wife Sole Owner of Winning Lotto Ticket

Earlier last month in Amsterdam, a judge ruled that a woman who divorced her husband in 2014 was under no obligation to share her $2.3 million dollar (2.1 million euro) lottery win with him. The ex-husband had taken her to court over the ticket, claiming that he was entitled to half of the winnings as it was purchased while they were still technically married. As the trial went along, it was revealed that the couple had separated their finances prior to the woman purchasing the lottery ticket, and therefore the winnings were hers alone.  The judge’s final written decision notes, “The above means that the prize won did not belong to their joint assets and that the court will hold the prize apart in its division of goods.”

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