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‘There’s a point where enough is enough’

Barring retailers from buying lottery tickets in their own stores is agood step toward preventing more fraud at the beleaguered OntarioLottery and Gaming Corp., Ontario's ombudsman said yesterday, butcritics questioned how the new rules will be monitored.

Barring retailers from buying lottery tickets in their own stores is a good step toward preventing more fraud at the beleaguered Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp., Ontario's ombudsman said yesterday, but critics questioned how the new rules will be monitored.

“We nudged the OLG forward on this issue and I'm pleased to see that the government has stepped in and made the right decision,” said ombudsman Andre Marin.

“There's a point where enough is enough. Since 2007 there have been audits after audits, criminal investigations after criminal investigations, arrests after arrests — all types of measures put in place to curb fraud costing conservatively in the tens of millions of dollars.”

Marin had been ready to push for a complete ban for retailers if the agency didn’t show signs of improvements after a scathing report in 2007.

He now says the latest changes raise hopes that the agency isn't dealing with an “ungovernable lot,” and adds prohibiting insiders from buying their own tickets is an inexpensive and practical solution.

Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak dismissed the government agency’s move as a pre-emptive strike by a Liberal government trying to deflect more criticism after what he termed the “summer of scandal.”

 
 
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