Reports emerging out of North Dakota in the United States are that a Jamaican man who US authorities had described as a mastermind of the dangerous lottery scam, Lavrick Willocks, has been sentenced to six years in a Federal prison.
Twenty-seven-year-old Willocks had pleaded guilty to defrauding at least 95 Americans out of more than $5.8-million.
US Prosecutors say Willocks operated the scam out of a mansion in Jamaica where he lived with his mother, Dahlia Hunter. He was among 27 people charged.
Willocks was accused of defrauding people in at least five states: North Dakota, South Dakota, South Carolina, Texas and Arizona.
Authorities said one of the victims died by suicide. All the defendants have pleaded guilty or have been convicted, and most have been sentenced.
The case was prosecuted in North Dakota because the investigation began there in 2012, a year after an 82-year-old woman lost her life savings.
Willocks pleaded guilty in July 2017 to conspiracy, and prosecutors dropped 65 other counts of wire fraud, mail fraud, and money laundering.
ABC news is reporting that Willoks had faced up to 40 years in prison.
However, Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan O’Konek recommended only about six years because Willocks cooperated and his plea deal prompted several other defendants to also plead guilty.
Willocks addressed U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland. He apologised for his role in the scheme but accused the government of overstating his involvement.
Willocks’s Mother was sentenced last week to just over a year in prison.