Lottery winner arrested for fraud

PUBLISHED : Friday, 10 July, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 10 July, 2009, 12:00am

One of the winners of a June 9 lottery drawing in Shenzhen is unlikely to get his share of the 33.05 million yuan (HK$37.5 million) prize, because he has been arrested for fraud, according to state media.

And as he purportedly had five tickets - all with the same winning numbers - only four of the nine winning tickets sold nationwide are legitimate, meaning the other winners could get 8.26 million yuan each, according to the Shenzhen Welfare Lottery Issuing Centre.

Media had reported that a punter had spent 10 yuan on the day of the drawing buying five winning tickets.

Police announced on Wednesday that the five identical tickets were a scam by a computer programmer who had hacked into the lottery centre's computer system, The Southern Metropolis News reported. Lottery-centre workers detected anomalies in the centre's computer system soon after the results were revealed. A further investigation showed that someone had hacked into one of the centre's computers and falsified data.

The alleged hacker, surnamed Cheng, was arrested on June 12. Police said he was a software engineer with a technology company that worked with the lottery centre, and he used Trojan Horse programs to attack the centre's computer system and insert the winning numbers.