England

Two charged in Weather Lottery fraud probe

Two former employees of a north Nottinghamshire lottery company have been charged in connection with an alleged £80,000 fraud.

Keith Milhench, of Brough, near Hull, and Amie Pickersgill-Smith, from West Yorkshire, are jointly accused of fraud and theft.

The charges relate to their time at the Mattersey-based Weather Lottery plc.

The firm runs lotteries for charity, education and sporting organisations, which retain a percentage of the sales.

Its "sunshine lottery", which has a jackpot prize of £10,000, is based on predicting the temperatures of various world cities published in the Daily Mail.

Gambling Commission

Jackpot payments to seven winners between April 2008 and April 2010 are alleged to have been misappropriated. The company is also being treated as a victim.

Nottinghamshire Police became involved after an investigation by the Gambling Commission.

No-one else at the organisation is suspected of any wrongdoing and there are no other alleged victims, said the force.

Milhench, 55, of Aire Close, Brough, and Pickersgill-Smith, 29, formerly of Weston Lane, Otley, jointly face seven counts of fraud and four theft charges.

They are due to appear before Nottingham magistrates on 24 January.

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