3 indicted on lottery fraud charges after sting operation

The convenience store employees are accused of trying to steal winning Lottery tickets
(Charles Gazaway (custom credit) | Source: WAVE 3 News)
Updated: Mar. 1, 2019 at 5:49 PM EST
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Sting operation leads to indictment of 3 Kentucky lottery workers

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Three people employed at convenience stores in Louisville have been indicted after an undercover investigation by the Kentucky Lottery.

During the investigation, which ran between February and July 2018, personnel with the lottery’s security department presented tickets to clerks at 60 retailer tickets that would scan as $18,000 winners when they were checked on the lottery terminal.

“When the tickets were presented, security personnel told the clerks he or she didn’t know if any of the tickets were winners,” said Bill Hickerson, Senior Vice President of Security for the Kentucky Lottery. “It was up to the clerks to scan the tickets to see if they were indeed winners.”

After the cases were presented today, a Jefferson County Grand Jury returned indictments against Indrias Joseph, Jinalben Savadara and Divyang M. Vyas.

The ticket in Joseph’s case was presented at River Road Shell at 3002 River Road. Savadara and Vyas both working at Five Points Food Mart, located at 4548 Taylorsville Road, when tickets to be checked were presented to them.

All three men are scheduled to be arraigned on Monday.

If found guilty, they could each face a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison.

“Lottery proceeds in Kentucky help send kids to college through college scholarship and grant programs and if folks don’t trust the games, they’re not going to buy the tickets," KY Lottery Senior VP of Communications Chip Polston said. “And that’s going to impact our ability to send kids to college, so it’s something we take very seriously.”

Kentucky Lottery officials say customers can check a ticket themselves to see if they have a winner by using the self-serve scanners at each location where tickets are sold, or by downloading the Kentucky Lottery app for your smartphone.

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