Auditor General Announces Review of Frequent Lottery Winners as Part of Revenue Department Audit

Auditor General Announces Review of Frequent Lottery Winners as Part of Revenue Department Audit
Audit will also examine Department’s sexual harassment policy, training

HARRISBURG, PA — Auditor General Eugene DePasquale announced his new performance audit of the state Department of Revenue will include a review of frequent lottery winners and whether the Pennsylvania Lottery is doing enough to prevent fraud by winners and retailers.

“My goal is to protect older adults who rely on Lottery-funded programs,” DePasquale said. “If players or retailers are committing fraud, the Pennsylvania Lottery has an obligation to catch them and take action to protect the integrity of the Lottery Fund.”

Following a multi-state media probe of frequent lottery winners, several states started aggressively tracking high-volume lottery prize claimants.

One of the claimants, a Massachusetts man, pleaded guilty in May to running a scheme in which he purchased winning tickets from other lottery players at a discount to help them avoid paying taxes. He had cashed more than 7,300 tickets worth $10.8 million.

READ:  FTC and FCC Send Joint Letters to Additional VoIP Providers Warning against ‘Routing and Transmitting’ Illegal Coronavirus-related Robocalls

“When this issue first surfaced several years ago, I warned that I would be monitoring the situation,” DePasquale said. “Some lotteries have taken major steps to crack down on suspected fraudulent claims and I want to ensure that the Pennsylvania Lottery is doing everything possible to prevent and stop any fraud.”

The Lottery is a bureau in the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. The audit will evaluate the effectiveness of the department’s regulations, policies and procedures to prevent and monitor for fraud, abuse or other prohibited activity by lottery winners and retailers.

“Last fiscal year, Pennsylvania Lottery players bought $4.5 billion in games and claimed more than $2.9 billion in prizes,” DePasquale said. “Seniors, lottery players and the general public deserve to know if every dollar of those prizes was claimed in accordance with the law.”

READ:  FTC Sends Letters Warning 50 More Marketers Making Unsupported Claims Products and Therapies Can Prevent or Treat COVID-19

Another objective of the audit will evaluate whether the Department of Revenue’s sexual harassment policy is effective and being followed.

“In 2016, state taxpayers paid $900,000 to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit against a former Revenue Department regional manager,” DePasquale said. “I want all state agencies to learn from that case and put an end to sexual harassment, once and for all.”

Learn more about the Department of the Auditor General online at www.PaAuditor.gov.

Source: Pennsylvania Department of the Auditor General

Thanks for visiting! MyChesCo brings reliable information and resources to Chester County, Pennsylvania. Please consider supporting us in our efforts. Your generous donation will help us continue this work and keep it free of charge. Show your support today by clicking here and becoming a patron.

Buy Us a Cup of Coffee