LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (CN) – A security boss at the Arkansas Lottery stole $478,000 in winning tickets – more than 22,000 tickets in all – skewing the odds against innocent players for 3 years, two men claim in a class action.
Lead plaintiffs Raymond L. Brock and Rick Tomboli sued the Arkansas Lottery Commission on behalf of more than 50,000 purchasers of scratch-off tickets.
The lawsuit in Pulaski County Court claims the commission did not inform players about the thefts after Executive Director Bishop Woosley learned of them on Oct. 26, 2012.
Woosley, Director for Security Lance Huey and Commission Chairman Dr. George Hammons are also named as defendants.
“Between November 2009 and October 2012, the Deputy Director of Security for the Arkansas Lottery, Remmele Mazyck, stole lottery tickets and cashed them undetected,” the complaint states.
“On information and belief, after the Lottery learned of the ticket theft situation on October 26, 2012, the Lottery repeatedly misrepresented to the public the number and cash value of the prizes still available in various scratch-off games. On information and belief, Remmele Mazyck cashed 22,710 tickets for a total of $478,073, but also scratched-off many more winning tickets than he cashed.
“On information and belief, Mr. Mazyck did not cash in any winning tickets with a value of more than 500 dollars.”
Mazyck pleaded guilty in July to federal wire fraud and money laundering charges, according to The Associated Press.
The class claims they “purchased non-winning tickets because of inducement by the lottery” and have been financially harmed by the lottery’s misrepresentations.
“On information and belief, after the lottery knew about the theft of scratch-off tickets, the lottery did not inform the buyers of scratch-off tickets that some of the winning tickets purported to be unclaimed and still available for purchase had been stolen by the lottery’s Deputy Director of Security,” the complaint states.
The Arkansas Lottery Commission declined to comment Thursday, saying by email that they “don’t comment on pending lawsuits.”
The class seeks damages for negligent misrepresentation, negligence, breach of contract, fraud and unjust enrichment.
They are represented by Lawrence A. Walker of Little Rock.
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