Thursday, May 5, 2005

The live television broadcast of the Italian Lotto draw, which was used to award the record-breaking 72.090.405,19 Superenalotto prize Tuesday, is reported to have had problems in the drawing procedure.

Only the numbered ball extraction of the “Ruota di Roma” (Wheel of Rome) was shown in the live television broadcast.

Instead of the traditional ball extraction made by a child, a new method based on an automatic machine was used for the “Wheel of Rome” and for the new “National Wheel”. The other “Wheels” were drawn with the traditional system but were not broadcast on public television.

The operation with the new machine worked for the new “National Wheel” but when the operation started for the “Wheel of Rome”, something went wrong. Not all the balls were taken into the box by the compressed air jet. A person tried to solve the problem, but a ball had fallen on the floor. Television images did not make it clear what really happened. Some parts of the procedure may not have been shown on television. The organization stated that the fallen ball was reinserted into the box, but this was not shown on television.

For these reasons, doubts have arisen about the regularity of the draw. Mr. Corbelli, the president of Movimento Diritti Civili, an association for civil rights, has stated that he wants an investigation to be made by the justice system to clarify what really happened and to check if the drawing was regular.

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