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Jamaican Man Sentenced To 6 Years In Prison For Lottery Scam
A Jamaican man who authorities say is responsible for a lottery scam in Arizona and four other states was sentenced Monday to six years in federal prison. The scam defrauded at least 95 Americans out of more than $5.8 million.
Lavrick Willocks operated the scam out of a Jamaican mansion he shared with his mother. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy, and originally faced up to 40 years in prison.
After cooperating with authorities, Willocks sentence was reduced to six years. He apologized for his role in the scam, but said that his involvement had been overstated. Authorities charged 27 defendants who have either pleaded guilty or been convicted.
The Federal Trade Commission estimates lottery scams could generate a billion dollars in Jamaica. The case prosecuted in North Dakota is believed to be the first large-scale Jamaican lottery scam tried in U.S. courts.