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France

Court orders ex-friends to share one-million-euro lottery winnings

DR

A winning lottery ticket has put paid to a 35-year friendship with a French court Friday ordering the one-million-euro prize to be shared between 79-year-old Messouad Boudissa and 73-year-old Cheikh Guendouzi.

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The court in the south-western town of Agen ordered Boudissa to share the prize with Guendouzi, the owner of a bar called l’Ecrevisse (the Crayfish) in Villeneuve-sur-Lot.

Guendouzi claimed that he lent Boudissa the 20-euro price of the Amigo ticket, saying, “If you win we’ll share, if you lose, you owe me 10 euros.”

But the pair are no longer amigos because Boudissa refused to share his big win, claming that he did not borrow the money.

Seven witnesses backed Guendouzi up and the court believed them.

But Boudissa insists they were all lying and is appealing against the ruling.

He will also take the witnesses to court for perjury.

His lawyer, Edouard Martial, argues that, according to the law, the holder of the ticket is the winner.

The two men are harkis – Algerians who collaborated with the French during the independence war – and have known each other since 1963, when Guendouzi settled in Villeneuve-sur-Lot after fleeing to France.

Before the court ruling Guendouzi swore that he would never talked to Boudissa again because he had “betrayed” him.

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