Seven years ago, while he was still working at his father’s convenience store in Syracuse, Andy Ashkar took a ticket that had won a $5 million jackpot from customer Robert Miles. Andy misinformed Robert about the value of the ticket, saying it had only won $5000. Then he gave Robert only $4000, after saying that the remaining $1000 was the store’s cut.
Andy waited just before the one year period to put in his claim, and then waited for almost five years before making his claim for the money. Lottery officials, who became suspicious when he couldn’t answer simple questions about how he can to have the ticket, called police.
Now after a lengthy trial, Andy has been sentenced to 8-1/3 to 25 years in prison. Ironically, Andy has been well off, making $150,000 a year at an auto dealership, while Robert barely makes ends meet as a building maintenance worker.
There is justice after all. Andy is headed to jail, and lottery officials are in the final stages of an investigation which may lead to the $5 million prize being awarded to Robert.