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Press release

September 9, 2010

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September, 2010 | Consumer Protection | Northern California

Lottery Stings Retailer Rip-off in Stockton


SACRAMENTO – As part of its effort to protect consumers, the California Lottery’s Law Enforcement Division has arrested two people in relation to the theft of a $20,000 winning Lottery ticket at a Stockton retail location.

The Lottery, working in conjunction with Alcoholic Beverage Control investigators, arrested a Waterloo Food & Fuel store clerk for attempting to steal a winning Lottery ticket. Another woman was also arrested for falsely claiming to be the owner of that same winning ticket.

“While this is a crime involving only one of our more than 21,000 authorized retailers, we demand that all our retailers and their clerks be fair and honest,” California Lottery Director Joan Borucki said. “The Lottery will not tolerate those who deceive our players and compromise the integrity of Lottery games.”

In this operation, an undercover investigator posed as a customer and handed the clerk – Roberta Borja de Charco - a decoy winning ticket and asked if it was a winner. The clerk told the investigator that their ticket was not a winner. A claim on the ticket was later submitted by her niece - Marta Pineda - who claimed she had purchased the winning ticket at another store in Stockton. Borja de Charco claimed she bought and scratched the ticket herself.

Both suspects face felony charges, including attempted grand theft and perjury. The punishment includes possible fines and incarceration in state prison.

The California Lottery is a leader in consumer protection. It has one of the largest forces of sworn peace officers of any Lottery in the nation.

The California Lottery is celebrating 25 years of enhancing education and supporting local communities. More than 94 cents of every dollar spent by our players goes to public schools and colleges, prizes and retail commissions. Since 2000, Lottery players have contributed $1 billion to public schools each year and since we began in 1985, Lottery players have contributed more than $22 billion to education.