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Pizza delivery driver is suing 16 of his friends after they won $1M in lottery syndicate and didn’t give him any of the cash: Says he’s owed $70,000 – despite not paying towards winning ticket
- Philip Tsotsos, from Ontario, Canada, says his friends have ‘stolen his dreams’
- He was in a lottery pool and owed money to them at the time of the draw
- He found out about the win on social media after being in the pool for six years
A pizza delivery driver is suing his friends who won a $1 million lottery prize believing he deserves a cut of their winnings.
Philip Tsotsos, from Ontario in Canada, is suing for $70,000 and other costs after accusing the group of ‘stealing his dreams’.
The group of 16 scooped the Maxmillion prize on a Lotto Max ticket from the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation last summer.
Philip Tsotsos (pictured) is suing his friends who won a $1 million lottery prize believing he deserves a cut of their winnings
Tsotsos believes he should be the 17th winner, despite the friends saying he didn’t pay to enter.
He told CBC News: ‘Why wouldn’t they tell me they won? These guys are like family to me.
‘Their dreams came true. Why should they steal mine?’
Tsotsos has named each of the 16 friends in the lawsuit and wants to be named as the 17th winner.
Defence lawyer David Robins, representing the group of 16, said: ‘Mr Tsotsos did not pay to play, so we deny that he is entitled to any of the relief that he is seeking, and we’ll be vigorously defending the claim. In this instance, he did not play and he was not included.’
Tsotsos claims he didn’t always pay immediately for the tickets which had worked on a credit system for the six years he had been a part of the pool.
He says he had previously owed money, with his tab even stretching to $100, but he always paid it back.
At the time of the big win, he had a tab of $30 and was told by the group’s organizer to repay the debt plus another $10 to stay in the group.
One of the winning 16 members poses with the $1million check after scooping the huge prize
He says he replied offering to pay the $40 by the Friday, then joked: ‘Just take it out of our winnings when we win.’
The organizer then joked he would charged a high interest rate.
In another exchange with a different member of the group, Tsotsos was told he needed to pay $10 to remain and he replied saying he wanted to continue.
He says he only found out about the win on social media.
The pizza delivery driver said he had only recently left his job at an auto parts delivery company at the time but wanted to remain in the lottery pool with the colleagues.
It was halted due to the pandemic in 2020 but restarted in March 2021.
In his court filing, he states the pool worked on an opt-out system and he could not be disqualified without it having been communicated to him.
The day he found out about the win which was announced in October, he had just bought the group pizzas.
He said: ‘I got online and I was just going through social media and what comes up. The same guy that’s eating my pizza is holding a million-dollar cheque, and that’s how I found out.’
Divided among 16, each member pocketed $62,500, and if he was included, they would have each received $58,000.