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Man guilty over trying to claim £1million prize
A shopworker who tried to cheat a great
grandmother out of a £1m lottery jackpot has been sentenced.
Farrakh Nizzar (born 30/07/1982), of Woodlands Road, Crumpsall, Manchester, pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation at an earlier hearing and today, 20 August 2012, was sentenced to 30 months in prison at Minshull Street Crown Court.
Nizzar was arrested and charged after attempting to falsely claim the one million prize on the UK National Lottery's Euromillions draw.
Camelot, operator of the UK National Lottery, carried out security checks on Nizzar after he claimed the prize and alerted police in Oldham after suspicions about the validity of his claim.
Inquiries established that Nizzar, who worked at the Best One Convenience Store on Watersheddings Street, Oldham, told the 77-year-old victim that she did not have a winning ticket when she returned from holiday and visited the shop to see if she had won a prize.
Nizzar scanned the ticket into a lottery machine which confirmed the woman had the winning numbers, but deliberately told her she had missed out. After she left the shop, Nizzar then called the lottery hotline and tried to claim the jackpot for himself, saying he had bought the ticket at the Best One store.
But Camelot exposed his lie after carrying out security checks and called police. A warrant was executed at his home but he was not present. However, he was stopped and arrested when his car triggered an Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) response as his details had been circulated as wanted.
The genuine owner of the winning ticket has now been traced.
Detective Constable Kate Carnally said: "Nizzar's actions were at best foolish, and at worst, extremely cruel.
"He knew this woman had a winning ticket and chose to lie to her, deliberately duping her out of a life-changing sum of money that would have meant financial security for her and her husband in their retirement.
"Whether it was a moment of madness in which he was blinded by the prospect of becoming a millionaire only he can know, but to cheat an elderly woman and try and claim the money for himself was both callous and underhand, but thankfully he did not get away with his scam.
"Throughout this investigation we have worked very closely with Camelot and we should applaud the diligence and thoroughness of Camelot's internal security checks which effectively exposed Nizzar as a liar. As a result, we launched a criminal investigation and picked Nizzar up using ANPR software.
"Because of that, Nizzar has been brought to justice and just as importantly, the genuine owner of the ticket has been paid out what was always rightfully hers."