International Lottery Winnings Program Scams - Internet Email,
Telephone and Mail Fraud Sweepstake Lotto Ticket Sales Scam
Other Lotto Pool and Internet Lottery Offerings
www.thelottopool.com - Spam offering
Australian Lottery, World Lottery Office, $16.95
Nigerian Advance Fee Lottery Winning Notification Scams
Their Number Came Up
On February 15, 2001, a federal grand jury in the Central District
of California returned an indictment against Jacques Tanguay,
Christina Tanguay, Donna Mata, and Wilfred Veyt on
wire fraud charges, including the sentencing enhancement for telemarketing
fraud, 18 U.S.C. § 2326.3
Jacques and Christina Tanguay allegedly owned and operated a British
Columbia-based lottery operation called, at various times, Global
Dividends International, Horizon 2000 Investments
International, and Platinum International which
during the course of the scheme, which ran from about November
1997 to May 2000, they induced elderly victims to send them more
than $2.7 million.
Mata and Veyt allegedly managed and were telemarketers in the
Lottery scam costs Fresno man $2,300
By Louis Galvan
The Fresno Bee
12/25/03 - A new twist to a scam involving the Canadian lottery
has cost a 77-year-old Fresno man $2,300, Fresno police reported
David Case, a detective assigned to the department's elder abuse
unit, said the victim received a letter from the International
Lottery Sweepstakes of Canada, accompanied with a check for $2,450,
notifying him that he had won $100,000 in the Canadian lottery.
To collect his winnings, however, the victim was instructed to
deposit the check and then send $2,300 (to cover Canadian taxes)
by Western Union to a certain Canadian address.
On Dec. 17, nine days after the victim had cashed the check and
wired the $2,300 to Canada, his bank told him that the $2,450 check
The next day, the victim received a telephone call from a person
who said he was a lottery official and requested an additional
By then, Case said, the victim had realized he was the target
of a scam and did not send more money.
While the Canadian lottery does exist, Case said winners have
to claim their prize in person and that there are other methods
in place for paying the taxes.
For years, hundreds of Americans, usually the elderly, have been
swindled of their money in such scams.
In the new twist, however, the victim receives a bad check upfront
to cash and is then instructed to pay the taxes.
Case said his office gets about 12 complaints each year involving
The cases are referred to a joint task force, called PhoneBusters,
comprising several law enforcement agencies including the FBI and
the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Big Losers International
11/00 - The FTC won a $19.7 million judgment against Toronto-based
Canadian boiler room telemarketers charged with operating an illegal
international lottery scam which used high pressure tactics to
persuade consumers to send anywhere from $29 to thousands of dollars.
They told consumers - most of whom were elderly - that they had
been "specially selected" to participate in a system
for playing the Canadian lottery and that they were likely to win
a large prize or jackpot.
The telemarketers told the consumers that they were "registered" or "sponsored" by
the Canadian Government to sell the lottery tickets, but failed
to disclose that it was illegal to sell them to U. S. consumers
though in fact, only a small percent of the money the telemarketers
took in actually went toward the purchase of lottery tickets.
The defendants named in the FTC suit are Windermere
Big Win International, Inc., Marathon Award Center, Inc., Sunshine
Fortuity, Inc., Ernest Levy, a/k/a Ernie Levy,
Alan Silverstein, Selvanayagam Pararajasingam, Michael Levy, and George
Consumers who believe they invested in foreign lotteries through
one of the named defendants may apply for redress by contacting
the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP.
Family of Fraudsters
On November 24, 2000, a jury in the Central District of California
convicted Eduardo Cartagena on 10 counts of wire
fraud. Cartagena had managed boiler rooms in Burnaby, British Columbia,
that were part of an operation called, at various times, Global
Dividends International, Horizon 2000 Investments
International, and Platinum International.
The testimony at trial showed that the business name was changed
often to avoid detection of the scheme. Cartagena’s stepfather
and mother, Jacques and Christina Tanguay (see above), owned the
operation and also operated a boiler room in Quebec. Cartagena
had been arrested in May, 2000, after he entered the United States.
On May 14, 2001, Cartagena was sentenced to 70 months imprisonment
and restitution to victims. The sentence was based in part on the
jury’s specific finding that Cartagena had defrauded at least
10 victims over the age of 55, which made him eligible for an increased
sentence under the section 2326 telemarketing fraud enhancement.
Premier Enhancement Required
On February 5, 2001, Joseph M. Polyak was
arrested in Blaine, Washington on the basis of a criminal complaint
in the Central District of California alleging wire fraud violations. Polyak
allegedly conducted a foreign lottery scheme that involved calls
to elderly victims from British Columbia under the names Imperial
International Services, Premier International, 591117BC LTD, and ELC Services.
Polyak was subsequently indicted on wire
fraud charges, as well as the telemarketing fraud sentencing
enhancement. He is scheduled for trial on August 31, 2001.
On January 10, 2001, a federal grand jury in Los Angeles indicted
two Canadian residents, Wilson Okike and Basil
Mark Steeves, on 12 counts of wire fraud and six counts
of mailing fraudulent materials relating to lotteries.
The indictment alleged that they operated fraudulent telemarketing
firms in Vancouver called North Klassen Services, Globallot Services, Royal Flush Ltd., and Intersweeps
Arrested in Blaine, Washington in December, they have both since
pleaded guilty to charges of wire fraud and mailing of lottery
Other Lottery Scam links.
World Lottery Organization list
of lottery fraud operations or illicit lottery activities.
Prize Scams - NZ Gov