Gravesend lottery scammer Imran Pervais avoids jail

PUBLISHED: 14:33 07 May 2013 | UPDATED: 14:33 07 May 2013

A Gravesend shopkeeper who tried to con a lottery syndicate out of almost £80,000 has avoided jail.

Imran Pervais was handed a 12-month suspended sentence at Maidstone Crown Court today while being ordered to carry out 200 hours community service and pay £1,000 in costs.

The 26-year-old, of Milton Road, was working at Moores Convenience Store in Mackenzie Way when he misled syndicate organiser Callum Crosier into thinking they had won £10 rather than £79,887 on May 18 last year.

It was only when Mr Crosier returned to work and checked the numbers that he realised one of the lines had matched five numbers, which would earn a prize of £1,000. He went back to the store and put this to Pervais who told him to return in a couple of hours so he could check the shop for the ticket.

Mr Crosier then checked the numbers again and realised the bonus ball on that line had also been matched, registering a near £80,000 windfall.

He went back to tell Pervais and demanded to be shown the ticket. He was given a number of bin bags to check through before being invited, about 10 minutes later, to look behind the counter. Some wooden plinths were removed from the back of the counter, revealing a number of pink winning slips and a screwed-up lottery ticket, which turned out to be the syndicate’s.

Camelot launched an investigation and Pervais was arrested on suspicion of fraud on June 15.

It took a jury just two and a half hours to find him guilty of fraud on March 27 following a two-day trial.

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