COLUMBIA,SC — State Law Enforcement Division agents arrested a former South Carolina Education Lottery accountant accused of stealing $200,000 from the organization.
Anthony J. McNeil, 54, is being held at Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on an embezzlement charge. McNeil was fired Oct. 10 after lottery officials discovered accounting discrepancies.
If convicted, McNeil faces a fine and up to 10 years in prison, according to SLED.
A SLED affidavit accuses McNeil of stealing $226,439.07 from the South Carolina Education Lottery between April 2010 and August of this year by manipulating the agencys computer system to not charge some ticket retailers while overcharging others. He would then call the retailers who werent charged and tell them to deposit payments into an account he controlled. According to the lotterys executive director, Paula Harper Bethea, the instances occurred sporadically over the two years
McNeils arrest comes after lottery officials discovered what they called accounting discrepancies in early October during an internal audit. SLED was contacted within 8 hours of the discovery.
The alleged embezzlement did not affect lottery players or prizes, Bethea said. She said the incident has led to tighter controls at the agency.
Although the tightest internal controls were in place, McNeil was intent and found a way to circumvent the procedures. She said. Because of this incident even more stringent additional monitoring procedures are now in place.