An Iraqi mystery man won the Oregon Lottery without having stepped foot in the state.
The Oregonian reports that the man, who has asked officials to remain anonymous, showed up at the Oregon lottery headquarters on Dec. 1 and presented the winning ticket for a $6.4 million Megabucks jackpot—which he bought online, through a third party.
Fearing his safety back in Baghdad, the Iraqi asked officials that his name not be made public. Oregon Lottery director Jack Roberts obliged because of the possible risk that someone might find out he had won a large sum of money.
“In this case, I made the decision based on talking to the guy,” Roberts told the Oregonian. “I do believe that there is a personal safety risk to him and his family … I would hope that people would respect the reasons for not giving the name. It’s not going to mean anything to them, but it could to someone halfway around the world.”
The prize money will be paid out over 25 years in installments and Friday the lottery transferred $158,720 to a bank account in Oregon the Iraqi set up.
The ticket was purchased on a London-based website that resells lottery tickets independently. Roberts says this may cause the man trouble later on down the road, but he said “there are more serious offenses [the feds] aren’t prosecuting.”
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