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Audit Reveals Lost New York Lottery Tickets Were Cashed In

27 November 2000

SCHENECTADY, New York – Nov. 27, 2000 – As reported by the Associated Press: ``Millions of dollars worth of unsold instant lottery tickets were unaccounted for and some appeared to have been illegally turned in for cash prizes, according to an audit obtained by The Sunday Gazette in Schenectady.

``While the audit said most tickets were probably routinely destroyed, it also said at least 100 books of tickets may have been kept by retailers to whom they were mistakenly delivered. That means the missing books potentially represent millions of dollars in lost Lottery revenue.

```'It is believed that some retailers or their employees took advantage of these errors,' the audit said. `Perhaps, knowing that the books would not settle against their account, they scratched the tickets and cashed in the winners.'

``The audit also reported that retailers had not returned more than 45,000 unsold ticket books approaching expiration, increasing the chance that ticket-buyers would run out of time to redeem them

``State Lottery officials say they have tightened management of the instant scratch-off games by rewriting the policy for destroying tickets and fixing bugs in software that tracks ticket inventories…"

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