The ultimate reversals of fortune
(Note: All figures in U.S. dollars unless otherwise indicated. Please check out our Currency Converter for the latest values.)
Believe it or not, statistics show 70 percent of lottery winners end up broke and a third go on to declare bankruptcy. Runaway spending, toxic investments, and poor accounting can burn through a lucrative windfall in next to no time. From rags to riches then back to rags again, these 20 unlucky lottery winners lost it all.
Another lottery winner who has ended up behind bars, Daniel Carley scooped $3.7 million on the Ontario Lottery in 2006.
The St Catherines resident spent like crazy.
By 2012, Carley was broke and up to his eyeballs in debt. Desperate to make ends meet, he turned to drug dealing and was sentenced in August 2017 to two-and-a-half years in the slammer for selling crack cocaine.
Ibi Roncaioli and her doctor husband Joseph were already comfortably off when Ibi won $5 million on the Canadian Lotto 6/49 in 1991. But all was not well in the relationship. Ibi had two ‘secret’ sons from previous relationships and gifted them the bulk of the winnings. When Joseph found out in July 2003, he killed his wife by injecting her with a cocktail of lethal drugs. The former gynecologist served seven years in prison for the crime.
A victim of her own generosity, Sharon Tirabassi from Hamilton, Ontario won $7.8 million on the Canadian Lotto Super 7 back in 2004. Tirabassi spent lavishly on family and friends, splurging on everything from designer clothes to a tricked-out Cadillac. Now, all that’s left of her lottery winnings is tied up in trust for her children and Tirabassi is living frugally in a rented house.
- 21 Hard Questions to Ask Yourself (& to Answer Honestly)
- Best Spots to Have a Summer Picnic
- Best Tacos in the City
- Best Beaches to Help You Survive the Summer Heat
- The 5 Best Bike Paths in the City