Camelot, an operator for the UK National Lottery, is going to have to pay a huge fine for breaching the terms of their operating license, according to the UK Gambling Commission. Reportedly, the UKGC has fined Camelot £3m due to the operator paying out £2.5m for a fraudulent jackpot claim made in 2009.
Andy Duncan is the CEO of Camelot who reported that the operator of lottery gaming had received a claim back in 2009 for a National Lottery prize worth £2.5m. The prize was being claimed within the damaged ticket prize process of Camelot. According to Duncan, Camelot made a reasonable decision to take based on the evidence available, at the time, and later realized that the ticket had actually been damaged on purpose.
The incident came back to light in 2015 when Camelot was given new information that cast doubt on the original decision. An investigation by the UKGC concluded that while it was not certain that fraud had taken place, it was more than likely than not that a fraudulent prize claim was made and paid out.
To make matters worse, the media of the United Kingdom is reporting that the individual who made the claim is Edward Putman, a convicted rapist that was still able to collect state benefits even with the £2.5m win. Putnam was arrested in 2015 for fraud when the information was found but was released at a later date due to insufficient evidence.
Camelot is reportedly conducting their own investigation into reclaiming the fake jackpot but has admitted that being able to get the money back is open to question. The fine handed down by the UKGC includes the prize amount of £2.5m that should have been sent to charity as well as an additional £500,000.
Sarah Harrison, the CEO of the UKGC, stated that the failures of Camelot are serious and the penalty package reflects this. Camelot has stated that they have made key changes to the prize payout control process which includes commissioning external assurance of jackpot claims.