Winners Repeated At Wisconsin Lottery
There have been multiple wins by the same person through Wisconsin lottery. Some people are wondering whether the company is playing fair and if their winners are legit.
Since 2009, Khalil Audi of Cudahy, Wisconsin, has cashed in lottery tickets 33 times to the tune of about $80,000.
Audi’s $10,000 win from Badger Cash Blowout was a one-in-72,000 chance. When he bought a $30 Super Millions scratch-off ticket, he had a one-in-200,000 shot of winning $5,000. That is the same odds as giving birth to conjoined twins. But that ticket cashed also.
Of his 33 wins, Audi purchased 30 of the tickets at Charlie’s Liquor & Tobacco Mart – the place where he works.
Audi’s wins are surprising, but he’s not the luckiest person in Wisconsin.
More ‘lucky winners’
According to Wisconsin Lottery data obtained by Gaming the Lottery, an international investigation into the global lottery industry, the state’s most frequent winner was Annie Mason of Milwaukee. Mason bought tickets worth $600 or more 65 times since 2000, for total winnings of $466,780. She hung up twice when contacted by a reporter.
In that same time, 11 winners have cashed 20 or more winning tickets of at least $600, earning prizes totaling $100,000 or more each.
Thousands of people throughout the state play a variety of games including scratch-off games and traditional lotteries, such as Powerball, which involve guessing numbers that will appear in daily or biweekly drawings. The lottery has provided more than $4.1 billion in property tax relief and at least $7.8 billion in prizes since it was launched in 1988.
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism found that at least three of the top 13 winners who have won 20 times or more in recent years have close ties to the retailers selling them the winning tickets — including Audi, who works at Charlie’s Liquor & Tobacco Mart, home to 30 of his 33 wins.
What laws are in place?
Wisconsin has no laws barring lottery retailers or their employees from buying or cashing in lottery tickets at their own stores. This is a gap in regulation that could open the state’s $600-million-a-year lottery system to fraud. Canada learned that lesson in 2006 when provincial lotteries in Ontario and British Columbia were rocked by scandals uncovered in media reports involving store owners and clerks.
In the US, news reports have revealed suspicious pockets of frequent winners. In some cases, these are owners or clerks at stores that sell lottery tickets.
Iowa’s lottery considered banning retail employees from playing the lottery at stores where they work. This is to ensure the games’ integrity. The ombudsman’s office investigates citizen complaints about state government.