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Mavis Wanczyk, who won the biggest jackpot in North American history – $758.7 million – has come forward to collect her prize, lottery officials say.

The 53-year-old mother-of-two bought the ticket at a Chicopee, Massachusetts, petrol station.

Mavis Wanczyk told reporters she had already quit her job.

The lucky numbers were 6, 7, 16, 23 and 26, and 4.

The biggest ever US Powerball jackpot was $1.6 billion, although that was shared by three ticket holders in January 2016.

Massachusetts State Lottery told reporters the ticket in August 23 draw had been validated.

Mavis Wanczyk told reporters: “The first thing I want to do is just sit back and relax.

“I had a pipe dream.. and it came true.”

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She said she had picked her lucky numbers based on relatives’ birthdays.

Mavis Wanczyk said of her 32-year job at a medical center: “I’ve called them and told them I will not be going back.”

She added that she was “going to go hide in my bed”.

Reporters asked if she had plans to treat herself to something nice, such as a fancy new car.

Mavis Wanczyk replied she just bought a new car less than a year ago, and now plans to pay it off in full.

One lottery officials described her as “your prototypical Massachusetts resident”.

He added that Mavis Wanczyk seems like “a hard-working individual” and “clearly she’s excited”.

The $50,000 prize awarded to the business that sells the winning numbers will be donated to charity, said Pride petrol station owner Bob Bolbuc.

The jackpot payout, which can be made in 29 yearly payments or a lump sum, is estimated to be about $443 million.

Powerball Product Group chairman Charlie McIntyre said in a statement that six other tickets – sold in Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and the Virgin Islands – won $2 million each.

Another 34 tickets across the US scooped $1 million.

Massachusetts lottery officials initially said the jackpot ticket was sold at a convenience store in the Boston suburb of Watertown, but corrected the location on August 24.

It is not clear how the error was made.

Odds of winning the jackpot are one in 292.2 million.


A Canadian couple has won for the third time in the lottery.

This time, the prize was the big one – C$8.2 million ($6.1 million).

Barbara and Douglas Fink had won the lottery twice before, once in 1989 and once in 2010.

However, February’s Western Canada Lottery jackpot was by far the largest, according to a press release from the provincial lottery.

Barbara and Douglas Fink from Edmonton, Alberta say they will use the money to provide for their children.

“Family comes first,” Barbara Fink told the lottery organizers.

“We want to make sure that our daughters and our grandkids are looked after.”

They will also spend some of their winnings on themselves. Douglas Fink says they plan to travel and start house hunting.

“Barbara wants a new house, so she’ll get one,” the husband told the lotto corporation.

Douglas Fink had previously shared a C$128,000 prize with four of his friends in 1989. In 2010, the couple won a C$100,000 prize.

This time, they were just one of two ticket-holders to guess all six numbers correctly.

Barbara Fink says she was the one who discovered they were winners, while her husband was out of town for work.

She tried calling him, but at first he didn’t pick up.

“He didn’t answer, so I waited five minutes and tried again,” Barbara Fink remembered.

“That time, he picked up. I said, <<I did it again!>>.”

“I knew we had all the numbers, but I didn’t know how many winners there were,” she said.

“I called Douglas back before midnight and told him it was more than $8 million.”


A Tennessee ticket had the winning numbers for a $421 million Powerball jackpot, officials said after November 26 draw.

The winning numbers were 17, 19, 21, 37, 44, with the Powerball 16. No one as yet had stepped forward to claim the prize.Powerball winning ticket January 2016

The Powerball prize grew in size since September 17, the last time anyone matched all six numbers.

The jackpot soared from $403 million to a reported $420.9 million on November 26 due to a spate of late ticket-buying.

The prize is paid out over 30 years, with the option of a lump sum payment, which officials said would add up to about $254.7 million.

The odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are 1 in 292 million.

The largest ever US lottery prize of $1.6 billion was split between three winning tickets in January.

Powerball is played in 44 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. Players can either buy $2 tickets using their own numbers or have them randomly generated by a computer.


Multi-State Lottery Association security director Eddie Raymond Tipton has been charged with fraud after allegedly hacking the computer that picks the winning numbers.

Eddie Raymond Tipton was arrested in January by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigations.

Prosecutors said he had been caught on CCTV buying the winning ticket. The $14.3 million prize was never claimed.

Eddie Raymond Tipton, 51, denies the charges.

Citing court papers filed by prosecutors in the case, the Des Moines Register said Eddie Raymond Tipton “may have inserted a thumb drive into a highly locked-down computer that’s supposed to generate the random numbers used to determine lottery winners”.

The offline computer is housed in a glass room and in theory can only be accessed by two people at the same time. It is also constantly monitored by a video camera.Eddie Raymond Tipton lottery fraud


It is alleged Eddie Raymond Tipton used his position as security director to change the video camera settings and record only one second in every minute. This would have given him enough time to enter the room and plug a thumb drive into the computer.

On that drive, according to the prosecution, was a rootkit: a stealthy computer program designed to do a specific task and, in this case, then erase itself.

That task was to predetermine the winning lottery numbers for the draw that Eddie Raymond Tipton was to later buy the winning ticket for.

As a member of staff, Eddie Raymond Tipton was not allowed to win the lottery himself.

The court filings suggest there was an attempt to claim the prize just hours before it was scheduled to expire by a company incorporated in Belize.

If found guilty of the two charges of fraud, Eddie Raymond Tipton faces up to 5 years in jail and a fine of up to $7,500.


An Iowa lottery employee has been arrested after he was named as the mystery winner of a multimillion-dollar jackpot at Hot Lotto.

Eddie Raymond Tipton, 51, has been charged with two counts of fraud after a four-year investigation.

He bought the Hot Lotto ticket in 2010, despite being legally prohibited, according to Iowa officials.

Eddie Raymond Tipton was caught after allegedly trying to claim the ticket through intermediaries.Eddie Raymond Tipton Iowa Lottery fraud

In 2010, Eddie Raymond Tipton had been working as the Director of Information Security for the Multi-State Lottery Association. Employees are banned from buying tickets or winning prizes.

The ticket Eddie Raymond Tipton bought was worth over $14 million.

Suspicions were raised after a lawyer tried to claim the prize for an unnamed person in 2011.

Iowa Lottery President Terry Rich said the case was one of the strangest in lottery history.

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The family of Urooj Khan, the lottery winner who was poisoned with cyanide the day after he collected his $1 million jackpot, are at war with his widow amid claims she tried to cash the winning cheque in the days after his death.

Urooj Khan’s brother, ImTiaz Khan, has alleged that Shabana Ansari attempted to claim the windfall “shortly” after Urooj’s death but was unable to do so.

ImTiaz Khan also claimed that his late brother and Shabana Ansari were not even married, meaning that she could miss out on half of the lottery prize to which she is entitled.

In another sign the family are tearing themselves apart, Urooj Khan’s sister, Meraj Khan, has launched a legal bid to take guardianship of his daughter Jasmeen from his first marriage.

Meraj Khan wants custody of the 17-year-old even though she appears to have lived with step-mother Shabana Ansari at her home in Chicago for most of her life.

Shabana Ansari’s lawyer said his client had been questioned for four hours by police and had “nothing to hide”.

The developments come as the Cook County Medical Examiner is expected to seek a court order to exhume Urooj Khan’s body later this week.

Family members said they do not wish to see the body if it goes ahead because it will be too traumatizing.

It is a tragic turn of events from July 19 last year when a delighted Urooj Khan, 46, collected the over-sized cheque from Illinois State Lottery officials at the 7-Eleven where he bought the winning scratchcard.

The event has revealed the first picture of Urooj Khan’s 32-year-old wife Shabana Ansari who moved to the U.S. after marrying him 12 years ago.

She can be seen wearing a green traditional Indian dress with a scarlet scarf. Her step-daughter Jasmeen Khan stands beside her wearing a grey sari.

Urooj Khan is seen smiling widely and told the TV cameras he was going to use the money to pay bills, donate to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital in Chicago and grow his dry-cleaning business.

After taxes, the prize money amounted to $425,000 which he opted to take in a lump sum.

The day after receiving his winning cheque, Urooj Khan came home from work and ate a traditional Indian Kofta curry that his wife had prepared.

He died a short time later. The initial examination by the Cook County Medical examiner found he had died of heart disease or natural causes.

After his death, the winning cheque was eventually cashed on August 15. However, in probate documents filed with the Cook County Court, ImTiaz Khan suggested that Shabana Ansari had tried to do so before.

Urooj Khan pictured with wife Shabana Ansari, daughter Jasmeen and his $1 million winnings shortly before his death from cyanide poisoning

Urooj Khan pictured with wife Shabana Ansari, daughter Jasmeen and his $1 million winnings shortly before his death from cyanide poisoning

In a September filing, ImTiaz Khan writes: “Ms Shabana Ansari is in possession of the lottery cheque and is concerned she may attempt to cash the cheque again, as she did shortly after the decedent’s [Urooj Khan’s] death, even though the estate is entitled to the funds.”

ImTiaz Khan also alleges that his brother’s ‘only known heir is his daughter Jasmeen Khan’ and pointedly states that Shabana Ansari is not her biological mother.

He says he wants her to get her “fair share” and alleges “there remains question as to whether [Urooj Khan] was married to Ms Ansari”.

His filing reads: “[ImTaiz Khan’s] counsel was informed by Citibank that [Urooj Khan’s] spouse, Ms Shabana Ansari, has been in communication with the bank and believes Ms Ansari may be attempting to control [Urooj’s] accounts.”

The papers also state: “Meraj Khan, [Urooj Khan’s] sister, filed a petition for Guardian of the minor [Jasmeen] on September 19, 2012.”

As a result of the filings last year, the jackpot was frozen and will remain so for the next three months.

In response, Shabana Ansari filed documents of her own which stated she was indeed married to Urooj Khan and the court agreed, making her the administrator of the estate.

The remaining three months will allow family members to make their case to the lawyer organizing how funds will be handed out. In normal circumstances, 50% goes to the spouse and 50% to the children, unless there are grounds for complaint.

In one sense Urooj Khan, who emigrated from India in the 1980s, should not even have been gambling in the first place because of his Islamic faith.

He had recently returned to Chicago from the Hajj pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, inspired to lead a better life and had sworn off buying lottery tickets – except just this once.

His death would have gone unnoticed as the first toxicology report said Urooj Khan died of heart disease.

However, two months later, a relative called the medical examiner demanding a fresh inquiry into the poisoning as he “didn’t accept it was going to be a natural death”.

During the dramatic phone call, the family member flatly rejected the original ruling and ordered investigators to have another look.

A second, more thorough toxicology report turned up the cyanide poisoning as cause of death.

Deborah Blum, a poison expert whose book The Poisoner’s Handbook is being made into a PBS TV series, said that Urooj Khan would have been in “absolute agony” after eating the cyanide.

Deborah Blum, a former chemist, said: “A good lethal dose of cyanide will kill you in ten minutes. A mid-range dose and people die within the hour. For a poison that’s pretty fast.

“Cyanide poisoning is a nasty death. There is an enzyme which allows your cells to breathe and the cyanide wipes that enzyme out.

“It suffocates you cell by cell. Symptoms include seizures, extreme shortness of breath and usually cardiac arrest.”

In her latest interview, Shabana Ansari told the Chicago Sun-Times that she hopes “God will reveal the truth”.

Shabana Ansari has previously paid tribute to her husband as a “workaholic” and vowed to keep his laundry business open to honor his memory.

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The death of Chicago lottery winner Urooj Khan has led to a murder investigation after a post-mortem examination found he died of cyanide poisoning.

Urooj Khan, 46, died suddenly as he was about to collect almost $425,000, but his death was initially attributed to natural causes.

The local coroner reopened his case after a relative came forward.

Chicago police confirmed they were now investigating Khan’s death as a homicide.

“It’s pretty unusual,” Cook County Medical Examiner Stephen Cina said, commenting on the rarity of cyanide poisonings.

“I’ve had one, maybe two cases out of 4,500 autopsies I’ve done.”

Stephen Cina’s office found that Urooj Khan died shortly after ingesting a lethal dose of cyanide.

Urooj Khan said he had sworn off gambling after making a trip to Saudi Arabia for the Muslim hajj pilgrimage, local store employee Ashur Oshana told the Associated Press.

The death of Chicago lottery winner Urooj Khan has led to a murder investigation after a post-mortem examination found he died of cyanide poisoning

The death of Chicago lottery winner Urooj Khan has led to a murder investigation after a post-mortem examination found he died of cyanide poisoning

Urooj Khan, who owned several dry cleaning stores, was named as the lottery winner and presented with a giant cheque in an Illinois lottery ceremony days after purchasing his winning ticket.

“Winning the lottery means everything to me,” he said on June 26, adding that he would put some of his winnings into his business and donate money to a children’s hospital.

He opted to take his winnings in a lump sum of just over $600,000, which amounted to about $425,000 after taxes.

Urooj Khan’s winner’s cheque was issued on July 19, the day before he died, but was cashed on August 15.

If a lottery winner dies, the money typically goes to his or her estate, a spokesman for the Illinois lottery said.

At the time, the medical examiner’s office did not generally perform autopsies on those older than 45 unless the death was suspicious. A basic toxicology screening came back negative and Urooj Khan’s death was ruled a result of the narrowing and hardening of his arteries.

Deborah Blum, a poisons expert, said cyanide would taste strongly bitter but that a lethal dose could kill within five minutes.

The poison, Deborah Blum said, disrupts the ability of cells to transport oxygen around the body, causing a convulsive, violent death.

“It essentially kills you in this explosion of cell death,” she told AP.

“You feel like you’re suffocating.”

The medical examiner’s office reopened the case and tested for a range of chemicals after a relative asked authorities to look into the case further.

Stephen Cina refused to identify the relative.

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