Woman Is Charged With Stealing $1 Million Lottery Prize From Her Cousin, Police Say

Woman Is Charged With Stealing $1 Million Lottery Prize From Her Cousin, Police Say

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(CNN)A woman has been arrested and charged in connection with cashing in her cousin’s $1 million prize winning lottery ticket in New York and keeping the money, according to police.

Iris Argueta, 32, was asked by her cousin last year to cash in the winning lottery ticket because he wanted to remain anonymous, according to a joint press release on Tuesday from Nassau County District Attorney’s Office and Glen Cove Police Department.

Her cousin agreed to pay her $50,000 in exchange for her claiming the prize from the $5 scratch off ticket that was purchased in Glen Cove, New York, according to the release.

Argueta, who lived in Virginia at the time, drove to her cousin’s residence, took possession of the winning ticket and mailed it into the New York State Lottery to claim the winnings, according to police. She opted to received the prize money as a one-time lump sum payment from lotto officials that totaled over $537,000, according to a press release from lottery officials in December 2020.

Argueta told her cousin that the lottery ticket actually only won $20,000 and gave him an envelope with $13,436, claiming the rest was taken out for taxes, according to the Nassau County district attorney’s office. Argueta even presented her cousin with forged paperwork from lottery officials detailing the winnings, according to police.

The victim came forward to police after seeing the lottery official’s press release stating that Argueta did claim the $1m lottery ticket, according to the release.

“This defendant exploited her cousin’s trust, allegedly lying and manipulating him with the aim of pocketing the lion’s shar

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Woman is charged with stealing $1 million lottery prize from her cousin, police say

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