FORT MILL, S.C. -- An 82-year-old Fort Mill man scammed out of thousands of dollars after bring tricked to believe he won a sweepstake.
Ralph Newell says "the mess" started April 2015. Newell said he got a phone call saying he won a sweepstake.
"They told me this is an award of $15,100,000."
The prize came with a fee. The company telling Newell he’ll have to pay insurance before he got his prize.
“I got the receipts of every penny. It has gone on from the 28th of April 2015 until now," he says
Over the past two years, Newell faithfully paid the crooks. He never saw a dime of his prize. This week, he finally got fed up and realized he’d been scammed out of more than $860,000.
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"I felt stupid," Newell said. "I thought about suicide, I thought about running out the country."
But instead, Newell faced the issue and on Tuesday went to authorities.
Now, he's warning others not to do the same.
"When it’s really good, don’t spend apenny andd don’t believe it. That’s all there is to it.”
Newell says he used his annuity to pay for most of the scam. That now has left him in a $75,000 dollar debt with the IRS.