A Canadian pizza delivery man has sued the winners of a million dollar lottery prize, claiming the group of his friends who are ‘like family’ to him left him out of his share of the profits.
But a lawyer representing the 16 defendants said the man did not contribute to the pool for the winning ticket and was therefore not entitled to any part of the prize.
Philip Tsotsos, a pizza delivery driver from Windsor, Ont., told CBC News that for six years he was a member of a lottery pool that won the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Association’s Maxmillion prize with a Lotto Max ticket last summer, and that he had remained a member of the group of former colleagues at an auto parts delivery company even after quitting that job shortly before their victory.
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Tsotsos says he has text messages to prove he was in the pool and was devastated to learn on social media that his former colleagues won the award and left it out.
Now he’s suing them for $70,000 plus interest, which he says is his legitimate claim.
“Why don’t they tell me they won?” Tsotsos told the outlet. “These guys are like family to me.”
Tsotsos acknowledges that there were times when he didn’t pay his share of the pool right away, but that the group operated on an opt-out basis and always ultimately paid what he had to.
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He claims he was carrying a $30 tab with the group before the winning draw and has text messages showing that lottery pool organizer Steven Todesco told Tsotsos to pay the $30 plus an additional $10 for stay in the pool.
Tsotsos says Todesco also agreed via text message that the full $40 could be taken out of the prize if the band were to win, but that Tsotsos would have to pay “high interest” for the service.
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The lawyer representing the group of friends of Tsotsos claims that the pizza delivery driver has no right to the winnings.
“Mr. Tsotsos did not pay to play, so we deny that he is entitled to the relief he seeks, and we will vigorously defend the claim,” attorney David Robins told CBC. “In this case, he didn’t play and he wasn’t included.”