Tioga Store Falls Victim to Lotto Scam

7-19-05 - AUSTIN, Texas (AP) A 33-year-old former Texas Lottery Commission employee is accused of defrauding retailers who sought licenses to sell lottery tickets.

Taneil Gage was charged with theft by a public servant June 28th. She faces up to two years in state jail if convicted. She's free on 35-hundred dollars bond.

A Travis County prosecutor says the scam targeted retailers who didn't meet minimum credit ratings. They would have had to submit a five-thousand-dollar bond with the lottery commission to obtain a license.

Gage allegedly told retailers they could avoid paying the full amount of the bond by contacting a woman who would pay it for them if they gave her about ten percent.

When applicants called that woman, some said they recognized Gage's voice.

A Travis County grand jury indictment says victims included retailers in El Paso, Frisco, Tioga and Houston. Gage allegedly made between 500 and 15-hundred dollars through the scam. No comment yet from Gage.