Man who fought state lottery for misleading claims is jailed for fraud


The man who set up a foundation to take legal action against the state lottery company Staatsloterij for misleading players about their chances of winning has been jailed for embezzling €2.8m in donations.

Ferdy R, 41, spent part of the money given by claimants on an expensive villa and is also guilty of money laundering, forgery and tax fraud, judges in Zwolle said.

The public prosecution department had called for a four year jail term, two years suspended. The court ruled that the sentence should be lower because R had no criminal record and that he had booked some success in his campaign for compensation for people who felt conned by the lottery.

The Supreme Court said in 2015 that the Dutch state lottery misled players between 2000 and 2008 by exaggerating the likelihood of winning. The lottery should have warned players that it would use both sold and unsold tickets when making the draw, the court said.

Some 23,000 people signed up for the foundation’s campaign but that rose to 194,000 after the Supreme Court ruling.

However, R was unable to get the lottery organisers to pay compensation and in 2017 he was removed from his role in the Loterijverlies foundation, the Telegraaf reported.

The case against R began in 2016 when the Telegraaf discovered that he had bought a luxury villa in Bergen via a trust company based on the Isle of Man.

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