A Northern California man accused of stealing and trying to cash his roommate’s $10 million-winning lottery ticket was arrested Monday.
Adul Saosongyang, 35, was charged with grand theft after allegedly stealing his roommate’s winning Scratcher ticket and swapping it for a dud in December, according to the Vacaville Police Department.
Police said Saosongyang’s roommate bought a $30 ticket at a grocery store on Dec. 20 and thought he had won $10,000. He shared the good news with his two roommates that night, but when he went to cash it in the morning, he discovered his winning ticket had been swapped for a loser.
“He suspected one of his roommates must have stolen his winning ticket while he was sleeping and immediately reported the theft to the police department,” a police statement said.
Meanwhile, Saosongyang brought the winning ticket to Lottery’s Sacramento District Office in an effort to cash it. He was told it was worth $10 million, not $10,000.
The lottery reviews all winnings over $600 and with the help of police and video surveillance, they quickly realized Saosongyang hadn’t bought the winning scratch-off, police said.
Saosongyang was invited to the lottery office to collect his winnings on Jan. 7, “but instead of him celebrating his big win he was arrested by Vacaville PD Detectives,” police said.
The actual winner has not been identified by police. A California Lottery spokesman told NBC News on Wednesday that “the potential owner of the ticket has come forward, but we cannot say he is the winner until after our investigation.”