The $14.3 Million Jackpot No One Claimed

02 Feb 2013 | 03:22 Author: Seth Shafer

A $14.3 million lottery jackpot has been abandoned but lottery officials are still investigating the strange, mysterious case.

Iowa's Division of Criminal Investigation is looking into the case, which has taken several twists and turns. A winning ticket worth $14.3 million was sold for a state lotto in Iowa but no winner stepped forward until just one day before the deadline to claim the jackpot.

77 year-old Crawford Shaw sent in the winning ticket via FedEx to a law firm in Des Moines, with Shaw claiming that he represented a trust that owned the ticket and that the law firm would be collecting on his behalf.

The winning ticket was legit but Shaw couldn't answer simple questions as to identifying who bought the ticket or confirming where it was purchased or answering any other basic questions that the winner would have known.

Shaw also wanted the money sent to the trust and then routed on to a corporation in Belize, which raised further suspicions as to how exactly he'd gotten the ticket and who the real winner might have been that bought the ticket at a Des Moines gas station in December 2010.

Shaw would eventually abandon his claim when questioning intensified, with the ticket rendered worthless after the deadline to claim it passed.

The current investigation by the Division of Criminal Investigation isn't to try to award the money to the real winner but just to make sure that foul play wasn't involved due to the unusual circumstances surrounding the case.

"The ticket could have been stolen or somebody might have been blackmailed," Jessica Lown, communications manager at the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation told ABC News. "The important thing is that we want to sure there is nobody in physical jeopardy or that there is no financial crime going on."

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