Ticket to Ride

Everyone wants to be a winner.  Everyone wants that winning lottery ticket.  But you have to be in it to win it, right?  Well, not according to your two new friends.  They come up to you as you’re getting into your car outside the bank.  They have a winning lottery ticket, but they can’t claim the money themselves because they’re undocumented aliens.  Can you help?  The prize money is $10,000, but they’ll sell the ticket to you for just one-tenth of that.  

Sounds fishy right off the bat, but they’re willing to prove that the ticket is good.  They whip out a cell phone and call the lottery office.  It’s confirmed.  The ticket is a winner.  Now how about that $1,000?  There’s a bank right here.

If the chances of you winning the lottery yourself are slim, the chances of a winner choosing you to split his winnings are absolutely zero.  In this scam, there is always some excuse why the person cannot cash the ticket on his own.  If it isn’t immigration status, it’s an outstanding warrant (!) or maybe he doesn’t have the money for the “claim fee” (there isn’t one).  Either way, he needs your help.  Is it easy money?  Sure it is.  For him, not for you.  If you hand over any money, he’s the one who’s hit the jackpot.  

Meanwhile, you take that ticket in to the nearest lottery retailer and find out it’s worthless.  Better luck next time.

“I’ve always loved movies about con men. I think con men are as American as apple pie.”


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