A South Carolina resident claimed the $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot from last October, the largest jackpot payout to a single winner and the second lottery prize in U.S. history.
The winner had until April 19 to claim the prize.The winning ticket was sold between Oct. 20 and Oct. 23 of last year at the KC Mart convenience store in Simpsonville, a suburb of the South Carolina city of Greenville. For months, South Carolina residents had speculated on why the winner hadn't stepped forward. Some even believed that the winner died. The person submitting the claim has chosen the cash option, a one-time payment of nearly $878,000,000 before taxes. The winner opted to remain anonymous. "We are delighted that the winner is a South Carolinian and has come forward to claim this remarkable prize," said Hogan Brown, the Commission's Executive Director.
South Carolina is one of states where winners can remain anonymous to protect from being targeted by people seeking money. The owner of the store where the ticked was sold gets a $50,000 payment. The owner, C.J. Patel, is an Indian immigrant who has lived in the U.S. for 20 years. The lottery commission said the state will get $61 million in income taxes from the winner. A press conference on behalf of the winner will be hold once the payment is processed.