1/18/10 – A counter assistant at a supermarket in the UK city of Plymouth has been convicted of stealing a winning lottery ticket from Paul Lamerton (40), a customer, and cashing it in for himself.
Daniel Saunders (25) made a thoroughly dishonest start to 2010 when the customer asked him to machine-check his lottery ticket. Despite the ticket showing a win of GBP 450, Saunders told the customer it had won nothing and dropped it into a rubbish bin. When the player left, Saunders retrieved the ticket and cashed it in as his own.
Unfortunately for the thief, Lamerton later went online to check his numbers in a later draw….and he noticed that his supposedly dud ticket had been a winner. He immediately contacted the supermarket manager, who reviewed the CCTV footage, confirmed that something was amiss and confronted his employee.
Saunders at first denied the accusations but later ‘fessed up.
This week he was convicted by the Plymouth Crown Court, where Judge Paul Darlow said: "This was a mean theft" in sentencing him to 240 hours of unpaid state work and to repay the full amount to Lamerton. The court was told that Saunders had previous convictions for similarly dishonest incidents, where he took money from an elderly person and also stole phone cards from a previous employer.
Speaking to local reporters, Lamerton said: "All the years we play it and never win it and then someone nicks your money."