Lotto-Winning Bombardier Employees Settle Dispute

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A settlement has been reached between 24 winners of a $50-million Lotto Max jackpot and Christopher Bates, a man who claimed to be part of the winning lottery group.

A group of mechanics and maintenance staff from the Bombardier plant in Downsview, Ont., won the Jan. 28, 2011, draw, with each winner awarded over $1.9 million, including about $2,400 in interest. But Bates, a colleague at the plant, said he founded the lotto pool and was entitled to some of the winnings.

Judge Carole Brown was to preside over a 10-day civil trial in Toronto to decide whether Bates should get a share, but on the second day a settlement was reached.

Bates and the 24 winners reached an undisclosed agreement on Thursday. Their terms will remain confidential.

Bates was on winter holiday when the group bought the winning ticket, and when he returned, his co-workers were millionaires. Bates and several other employees said they were entitled to some of the winnings, because they were in the lottery pool but missed the winning draw in 2011.

The payout was withheld while lottery officials investigated after additional claimants came forward. All but two of those claims were rejected.

OLG divided the jackpot into 26 shares — two of which were held by the court until the claims were decided. Bates's case for one of those two payouts has now been settled.

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