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Friday, 14 January 2011

French lottery winner shares 10 million euros jackpot with friends

The New Year got off to a rather special start for two couples in their 60s from just outside the southern French city of Arles as they picked up €10 million between them in the lottery.

image - screenshot from TF1 report

Except the win wasn't quite as straightforward as is it might initially appear.

Because in fact only one man held the winning ticket, but he decided to share the jackpot with his wife and the other couple because he was - well to put in quite simply - a man of principle.

As the regional daily, La Provence explained when it first reported the story, the two couples, who had known each other for more than two decades, had been regularly playing the lottery for the past three years.

They tried their luck at Christmas, says the paper, choosing the numbers together and handing over the €10 at the local tobacconists.

The draw was made and they won - absolutely nothing.

A week later though Jean-Pierre who, as the French media has reported, prefers to stay out of the limelight, entered the lottery again, only this time without telling either his wife or his friends.

He chose exactly the same numbers as the previous week, paid the €10 and...yes you've guessed it...the numbers came up.

And he was €10 million the richer.

Now this is the point where most of us would probably in theory wish to be magnanimous.

But as the recent example of Jeanette French in the United States proved that isn't always the case.

She was the 72-year-old woman from Florida who had been a member of a syndicate playing the State Lottery for the past eight years.

When the syndicate scooped the $16m jackpot the other seven members refused to split the winnings with French, because as ABC News Radio reported, she hadn't put her dollar in the collective pot.

The case soon became one for the lawyers.

Not so with Jean-Pierre though.

He immediately told his wife Eve - all right it would have been difficult to have kept it from her probably - and the other couple, Jean-Paul and Sophie.

Not only that, he has also split the winnings four ways and never considered keeping the money for himself.

"It's normal that we should share the money as we've known each other for 22 years," he told France Info radio.

"I went to see them and asked them to give me the usual €5 they contributed every week, and when they did, I told them we had all won €10 million."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very nice story!

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