DES MOINES, Iowa — Investigators believe that two attorneys from Texas may be tied to a widespread case of lottery fraud that began here in Iowa.
Former Multi-State Lottery Association employee Eddie Tipton was found guilty of two counts of fraud for tampering with a computer that was supposed to randomly choose the winning numbers for the drawing. In July the Iowa Court of Appeals dismissed one of the fraud convictions.
Tipton was caught after trying to collect a Hot Lotto jackpot prize worth $16 million from a drawing in December of 2010. Because of his employment, Tipton is not allowed to play the lottery and tried to use intermediaries to collect the jackpot.
The Iowa Lottery did not pay out the jackpot because, at the time, it could not verify it had been purchased legally. The investigation into the purchaser of the ticket led to Tipton.
Tommy Tipton, Eddie’s brother, was charged in April of 2016 with ongoing criminal conduct. Officials say he was part of a criminal network that was responsible for collecting tainted jackpots in other states. His trial has been scheduled for January 23rd of 2017.
The Iowa Attorney General’s Office is now asking a judge for subpoenas for the records of two men.
Their names are Luis Vallejo and Thad Whisenant.
Anyone who knows about the Texas attorneys or their relationship with the Tiptons is asked to call authorities.