I received a letter with an enclosed check of indicating winnings of $125,000 from Mega Lottery conducted in the U.K. on July 27th, 2012 with a ticket serial number and winning number. There is an indication that the company who sent the letter tried "many unsuccessful attempts to contact me" regarding my winnings (no one ever tried to contact me prior to this letter). It indicates that this is my share of a $4 Million pot with 32 other random winners from the US, Canada, Mexico, and the U.K.
The enclosed check was in the amount of $2,770 which was apparently deducted from my winnings and was enclosed to expedite the processing. It says the sole purpose of the check is for the payment of applicable government taxes on my winnings. It also says government taxes cannot be deducted from the winning amount because of the insurance policy coverage. The letter goes on to say that the tax amount of $1,770 must be paid directly to the tax agent.
The letter also asks me to not attempt to use this check until I call them back. It also asks me to keep this confidential until the claim has been processed to avoid unscrupulous acts by non-participants.
A guy by the name of Steve Hunt is the "Claim Agent" with a phone number of 1-289-892-3923. The letter is signed by "Rhonda" with the name Richard Robert printed below the signature with Promotion Manager and office hours listed M-F 9am-7pm and Sat 10am-3pm EST. In addition to the number listed above they also have a UK number of 011447031849516. It urges me to contact my claim agent immediately and quote my claim number for further clarification within 5 business days.
I called and spoke with an agent. He sounded like he was from Nigeria. The agent asked me to deposit the check into my bank account and to call him back once I had done this. I deposited the check into my bank account. I went home and called the agent and was advised to wire $1,770.00 to the tax agent in New York City, a Mr. Peter Moore at 170 main St NY, NY 10024.
I realized this was a major scam.