A man who split a winning $4.8 million Colorado Lotto jackpot with two brothers who were eventually convicted of rigging the numbers says he is owed the full amount because he had played the game fairly.
Amir Massihzadeh, of Boulder, Colo., received $568,990 after splitting the prize money with brothers Eddie and Tommy Lipton in 2005, the Denver Post reported.
The Lipton brothers were later convicted of rigging lottery numbers — including the win in Colorado — and ordered to pay restitution. Massihzadeh said he had let the computers choose his numbers and was never suspected of wrongdoing.
Massihzadeh requested the Colorado Lottery for a full payout but was denied on the grounds that the terms of the payout were in a contract which he had signed.
Massihzadeh sued but the lawsuit was dismissed in February 2018. The Denver District Court judge who dismissed the lawsuit had agreed with the Colorado Lottery’s assessment of Massihzadeh request.
The Colorado Court of Appeals will hear arguments Massihzadeh’s case on Tuesday. His attorney, Robert Duncan, told the Post: “If an honest person plays a game by the rules, but other players cheat to win and get caught, then the honest player should get the whole jackpot and the cheaters should not get anything.”