$522 Million Mega Millions California Jackpot Claimed

Friday September 20th 2019

The half-billion dollar Mega Millions jackpot hit in San Diego in June has been claimed.

California woman Laarni Bibal didn't give her $2 Quick Pick ticket a second thought after she purchased it at her regular retailer, the Sorrento Deli Mart in San Diego.

Her numbers were 27, 68, 17, 19, 40 and Mega Ball 2, matching all six numbers drawn to win the jackpot in the June 7th draw.

The day after the draw, she learned that a California ticket bought at the Sorrento Deli Mart had won the jackpot. “My heart started beating really fast!” she recalled.

Ms. Bibal chose the cash option and will receive a lump sum payout of $340 million. The amount is before federal taxes. California does not levy state taxes on lottery winnings. The other payout option would have been to take an annuity, where the full $522 million jackpot is paid out in 30 annual instalments.

The Sorrento Deli Mart, which is located at 10920 Roselle Street, Suite 109-110, will also receive a $1 million bonus for selling the winning ticket. The day after the draw, one of the store's owners said he had "no idea [who won] ... Hopefully it's a group who won it. Whoever it is, I'm happy for them. And I'm glad it was in our store."

Bibal took her time before claiming the prize and consulted the California Lottery Winner's Handbook for advice on her next steps. Asked where she kept the ticket while waiting to claim, and said it was "in a secret hiding place." However, she wouldn't reveal where the secure location was, saying “I can’t tell you. The secret hiding place is still a secret!”

Her plans for the amazing prize include paying off debt and buying a house.

The June 7th draw also produced two other millionaires. Tickets worth $1 million each were sold in Arizona and Washington State. They matched the five main numbers but missed the Mega number.

Mega Millions is played in 44 states plus the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Draws are held every Tuesday and Friday in Atlanta at 11pm ET.

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