At least three winners in record US lottery jackpot
Mar 31, 2012, 14:40 GMT
Washington - At least three people in as many states have won the jackpot in the Mega Millions lottery draw in the United States, lottery organizers said early Saturday.
The lure of winning almost 650 million dollars had sent the country into a ticket-buying frenzy in the run-up to Friday's draw.
The winners were from Maryland, Illinois and Kansas, the lottery officials said. All three picked the winning numbers: 02-04-23-38-46-23 and would share the prize.
In Maryland, the winning ticket was sold in Baltimore County, the Maryland Lottery said on its website. A spokesman for the Illinois Lottery said the state's winning ticket was sold in the town of Red Bud, near St Louis. The third ticket was sold in north-eastern Kansas, according to the Kansas Lottery website.
Ticket purchases skyrocketed after Tuesday's draw when - for the 18th consecutive time - the winning numbers went unplayed, rolling over a jackpot that had built to 360 million dollars.
The winning ticket could be worth about 25 million dollars a year for 26 years. The lucky player could instead choose a one-time payment of more than 400 million dollars - but a large portion would be deducted for federal and state taxes.
Lottery critics warned that the odds of picking the winning numbers were 176 million to one.
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