Lottery Winner Can Remain Unidentified, Judge Rules

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The woman who won $560 million Powerball jackpot in New Hampshire two months ago can keep her identity private but not her hometown, a judge has ruled.

In the end, the court sided with the woman, saying disclosing her name would amount to an invasion of privacy.

However, the commission argued that it was required to disclose her name and hometown as the information was already written on the ticket.

However, Temple added that nothing in his order could be interpreted to prevent the lottery commission or its employees from "processing, maintaining, or accessing Ms. Doe's ticket in the normal course of business". The winning ticket was sold at the Reeds Ferry Market in that town for the January 6 drawing.

Temple found there was "no evidence" the New Hampshire State Lottery Commission was engaged in fraudulent activity, noting the drawing takes place in Florida. The state Attorney General's Office said the woman's name must be revealed because she signed the back of the ticket, USA Today reported.

A lawsuit filed by the woman's lawyers says she is an "engaged community member" who wants to go about public life "without being known or targeted as the victor of a half-billion dollars".

"We won. It's great", said Attorney William Shaheen, of Shaheen & Gordon, P.A.

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The victor will collect a lump sum of about $358 million, before subtracting for taxes, according to the New Hampshire Lottery. The Commission is enjoined from ever releasing her name or address permanently.

Her lawyers sued the Lottery Commission, attempting to keep her identity private, in part, because they say her safety would be in jeopardy. "She will be able to live her life normally".

Still, the judge said, the winner's hometown, Merrimack, New Hampshire, would have to be disclosed.

"Rather, after considering the record and the arguments, the court finds that Ms. Doe has met her burden of showing that her privacy interest in the nondisclosure of her name outweighs the public's interest in the disclosure of her name", Temple wrote.

Temple said that the court has no doubt that if her identity was revealed, she would be subject to harassment, solicitation and other unwanted communication.

A judge has ruled that a New Hampshire woman who won a Powerball jackpot worth almost $560 million can keep her identity private.