Friday August 30th, 2013 – A lucky New York resident was scammed out of his $5 million win on a NY scratch-off back in 2006 but will finally receive his winnings in the next couple of weeks, seven years after being duped.
Robert Miles of Syracuse bought the scratch-off ticket in October 2006 at The Green Ale Market store owned by Nayef Ashkar. However, when he returned to the store to check the ticket Nayefâ€™s son, Andy Ashkar, told Miles he had only won $5,000 and kept the winning ticket for himself.
It wasnâ€™t until 2012 when the Andy, along with his brother Nayel, contacted state lottery officials to try and redeem the ticket did Miles come forward and say he was the real winner, promoting the New York Lottery to launch an investigation.
Robert Miles (left) with his lawyer Steve Cambareri
Image source Syracuse.com
Miles told officials Andy Ashkar had stolen the ticket from him, telling him it was only worth $5,000 and giving him $4,000 and keeping a $1,000 â€˜cutâ€™ for the store. At the time Miles was addicted to crack cocaine and, confused by what Andy Ashkar had told him, walked away from the store with $4,000 thinking that without the ticket, it would be the word of a â€œcrackheadâ€ against that of a store owner.
Lottery officials launched an investigation into who the real owner of the ticket was and in the spring of 2013, the case went to trial. Andy Ashkar was found guilty of possessing stolen property and was sentenced to up to 25 years in prison.
Earlier this week the Gaming Commission verified that the ticket did belong to Miles, who had been forced to file for bankruptcy in 2008. His lawyer told The Post-Standard of Syracuse that Miles was “elated the lottery prize has finally been awarded to him.”
The winning ticket would have paid the $5 million out as a $250,000 annuity over 20 years but, because of changes in the lottery this year, Miles now has the option to select a cash payout of $3,210,000, which would work out as $2,124,378 after taxes.
Congratulations Miles on finally receiving your win â€“ after hitting the jackpot seven years ago you can now enjoy your millionaire status!
For the latest lottery winning numbers for games across the US, visit Lottery.net.
Updated March 30th, 2016