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Officials refuse to pay man’s $5 million lottery winnings because his underage son bought the ticket

By Mason White 1:02 PM August 28, 2017
Lottery (illustration)
Lottery (illustration)
By: Emily Lewis

A man is furious after lottery officials have disqualified him from collecting his $5 million in winnings.

Ward Thomas of Long Beach, California, said that he purchased some scratch-off lottery tickets and won some money with one of them.

He then sent his 16-year-old son into the Mobil Gas Station, where the boy used the winnings to buy five more scratch-off tickets.

One of the five tickets won him $5 million. However, when Thomas came to collect the money, the California Lottery Commission refused to hand give him his winnings.

They claimed that his son, who bought the tickets, was underage and was not legally allowed to buy them.

Thomas is suing the state, saying that his son picked up the tickets for him. He is suing the Mobil station on Bellflower Boulevard, claiming that employees at the gas station did not ask the teen how old he was when they allowed him to buy the tickets.

The state Attorney General’s Office claimed that a minor purchasing the lottery tickets amounts to “illegal gambling” and therefore, the money should not be paid out.