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5 Years Later, 2017 Lottery Winner Gets His 30 Million Baht

30 million baht lottery winner 2017 preecha jaroon
Jaroon Wimu, 66, talks to the media outside the Supreme Court Tuesday.

It took five years, but a Kanchanaburi lottery winner finally got his 25 million baht.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday acquitted retired policeman Jaroon Wimu, 66, of charges of embezzlement and possession of stolen property related to a lawsuit challenging his win of 30 million baht as first-prize in the Nov. 1, 2017 lottery draw.

The charges stem from a complaint by Kanchanaburi teacher Preecha Kraikruan, 54, who claimed that the five winning tickets Jaroon cashed actually were his. He had lost them and Jaroon found and claimed them as his own. The teacher produced a number of “witnesses” to back his story.

A Kanchanaburi court and the Court of Appeal didn’t believe the teacher and Jaroon has responded over the past half-decade by filing seven lawsuits against Preecha and his “witnesses”. Despite the loss in the criminal trial, Preecha also has vowed to continue his battle in the civil courts to claim money he claims is rightfully his.

When Jaroon turned in his winning tickets with the number 533726, he was awarded 29.85 million baht after taxes. He deposited the money in his Krungthai Bank account and spent 5.5 million of it before Preecha pounced.

After the court case was filed, authorities seized the remaining 24.35 million baht, which has been held in escrow since. The former cop will now get his payday. Hopefully he invests it somewhere other than a savings account at less than 2% interest.