Store owner who stole winning lottery ticket sentenced to a year in jail

TORONTO — A former convenience store owner who ripped off a regular customer and her three lottery partners for $5.75 million is headed to jail for a year.

TORONTO — A former convenience store owner who ripped off a regular customer and her three lottery partners for $5.75 million is headed to jail for a year.

Hafiz Malik pleaded guilty last December to stealing the winning Lotto 6-49 ticket from Lorraine Teicht and her co-workers.

Court heard that Malik stole the ticket from Teicht in 2004 when the Toronto woman checked it at his store.

Malik told her the ticket was a loser, then waited seven months to cash the pilfered prize at the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. offices in January 2005.

Teicht, Paul Carlisi and sisters-in-law Silvana and Aurora Pincivero, all staff workers at the Toronto Catholic District School Board, were later compensated by the lottery corporation, with interest.

But Teicht didn’t get to see Malik sentenced on Tuesday — she died of bile duct cancer in April at age 56.

At Malik’s sentencing hearing, prosecutor Philip Perlmutter quoted Teicht in her victim impact statement as saying Malik’s fraud cost her two things she could never replace: Trust and time.

Teicht said she could not trust her friends after they accused her of stealing the winnings.

The partners later realized Teicht was telling the truth and they had been bilked by Malik.

Since Malik’s fraud, the OLG has installed self-checking scanners for customers.