An Algerian young man residing in Belgium illegally won a prize of 250 thousand euros, after participating in a lottery game in the country.
The Algerian youth is seeking, according to Agence France-Presse, to obtain his prize, but the Belgian Lottery Foundation requires him to submit identity papers.
And “AFP” quoted Alexandre Verstati, the lawyer for the 28-year-old Algerian, that the winning ticket is currently in the possession of the judiciary in Bruges, after 3 of the winner’s friends tried to get the prize, before they were accused of attempted theft.
The lawyer said that the three young men, who are also from the Maghreb countries, spent a night in detention last week for the same reason.
The Prosecutor’s Office in Bruges opened an investigation to find the winner, who was able to acquit his friends after turning himself in to the police, accompanied by his lawyer.
Verstati said his client’s situation is “illegal, as he does not hold any identity papers and does not have a bank account.”
The lawyer added, “We are currently looking for documents proving his identity. He must communicate with his family in Algeria.”
The winning ticket was sold a few weeks ago in Zeebrugge, a Belgian port city and destination for migrants trying to reach England illegally by hiding in trucks or containers.
The lawyer explained that his client did not intend to apply for asylum and remain in Belgium.
He obtained a promise from the Belgian authorities that they would not return him to the border until the award was handed over.
The merchant who sold this ticket is prohibited from delivering a cash prize of the same amount to the winner. If the prize is more than 100,000 euros, the merchant must automatically send the winner to the company’s headquarters in Brussels, according to the spokeswoman for the National Lottery, Joke Vermore.
To this headquarters the three friends of the winner went, and one of them asked to transfer the amount to his own bank account.
“The winner did not come to the company’s headquarters and we never saw him, which currently hinders the award delivery procedures,” Vermore said, without mentioning the conditions or nature of the required documents.
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