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Man sentenced to 5 years in Florida lottery scheme

August 20, 2020 GMT

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — A Jamaican man has been sentenced to five years and six months in federal prison in the U.S. for running a lottery scheme in Florida and his home country.

A federal judge in Jacksonville sentenced Darryl Cleon Forbes, 27, earlier this week, according to court records. The court also ordered Forbes to forfeit $2.4 million and pay $1.1 million in restitution.

He pleaded guilty in November to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

From 2015 to 2017, Forbes and others operated a fraudulent sweepstakes scheme, prosecutors said. Forbes and his co-conspirators, posing as FBI and Department of Treasury officials, falsely informed victims in the U.S. that they had won a prize in a sweepstakes and had to pay various fees and taxes to retrieve their prize. The group often targeted the elderly.

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No victim of the conspiracy ever received a promised prize, investigators said. Forbes and his co-conspirators kept all the money.