US man finds forgotten lottery ticket worth a million dollars

The Oregon State Lottery ticket was worth US$1 million (S$1.4 million).
The Oregon State Lottery ticket was worth US$1 million (S$1.4 million).PHOTO: OREGON STATE LOTTERY

WASHINGTON - A man cleaning out his office found a forgotten lottery ticket worth a million dollars that was a week away from expiring.

Joemel Panisa found the ticket just eight days before it expired, the Oregon Lottery said, according to US news reports.

Panisa is officially now the fourth Mega Millions US$1 million (S$1.4 million) winner since the game was offered in Oregon in 2010, the Oregon State Lottery said in a news release on Wednesday (Jan 11).

He purchased the winning ticket last year on Jan 15, 2016, at a mini market along a highway in the city of Newport, Oregon, the state's lottery agency said.

Panisa then placed the ticket in an envelope and put it in his home office, where it was left forgotten for a whole year, the Oregon Lottery added.

But "thanks to the snow and ice storm" that recently hit the state, Panisa was motivated to clean the office and stumbled upon the ticket again this past Monday, Jan 9, the Oregon Lottery said.

He claimed it the same day, just before the ticket was set to expire on Jan 17, 2017.

The mini market that sold the winning ticket will receive a 1 per cent bonus, or US$10,000, the Oregon State Lottery said.