Lawyers representing a group of US lottery players are filing a lawsuit against the Multi-State Lottery Association seeking refunds for cash their clients spent on lottery drawings that were rigged by one of the non-profit’s employees.
Papers were filed earlier this week in an Iowa district court on behalf of Dale Culler, an Burlington, Iowa-based insurance salesman. Culler’s attorneys are seeking both a class-action status for the case, as well as declaration from the court holding the Multi-State Lottery Association liable for the actions of its former employee, Eddie Tipton.
Tipton has been charged with a number of fraud and money laundering charges after lottery officials discovered that he had inserted code onto the lottery’s random number generating program that made lottery drawings less than random. Law enforcement officials say that Tipton and his confederates went on to win millions from the rigged draws.
Like a true lottery player, Culler knows that his chances of success in the case are pretty slim, but that hasn’t dampened his enthusiasm. In a statement to the Associated Press, Culler said:
While I know the odds aren’t great, I never expected that the games were fixed and my chance was zero.
Culler went on to say that he still has the $45 worth of lottery ticket stubs that he purchase between 2005 and 2011, when Tipton’s scheme was in operation. His lawyers say that other lottery players who aren’t quite as organized as Tipton would be able to submit sworn affidavits in place of actual lottery tickets.
Officials at the Multi-State Lottery Association are fighting the actions, saying that Tipton acted on his own and that the non-profit organization acted as soon as it became aware of the problem.