The winner of the biggest lottery jackpot of all time has been sued by a man who claims the lucky guy stole the winning ticket.
Jose Rivera claims he bought a Powerball ticket at Joe’s Service Center in Altadena, Calif., on Nov. 7, a day before the record-breaking $2.04 billion draw, according to legal documents obtained by TMZ has.
Rivera alleges that a man named Reggie stole the ticket from him that same day and that he bought it and tried to get it back after the numbers were drawn. But Reggie said the ticket didn’t include the winning numbers and agreed to give up half of the prize money if found, Rivera said.
Then earlier this month Edwin Castro was announced as the winner of the jackpot. He did not appear in person for the announcement at a press conference, opting to collect it as a lump sum payment of approximately $997.6 million. His identity was kept secret for months after the win before being revealed.
The plaintiff reported the theft to the California State Lottery and the police. Rivera said he “refused to be blackmailed” and is calling for an investigation before the money is paid to Castro.
Rivera lists Castro and Reggie as separate defendants. Rivera tries to be declared the jackpot winner and collect damages.
A spokesman for the California Lottery stated that it “does not have the authority to investigate criminal activity among its players” and that only law enforcement agencies can investigate such allegations.
Lottery officials are limited to answering questions and providing evidence in police investigations, the spokesman told TMZ.
“When it comes to the verification process for big winners, the California Lottery has the utmost confidence in their process,” the spokesman said.
“The California Lottery remains confident that Edwin Castro is the legitimate winner of the $2.04 billion prize from the November 2022 Powerball drawing.”
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https://metro.co.uk/2023/02/25/biggest-lottery-winner-ever-sued-by-man-saying-ticket-stolen-from-him-18346565/ Biggest lottery winner ever sued by man who claims his ticket was stolen