The lucky workplace collective scooped the eight-figure sum on Thursday 5th May after Robert Adams, a colleague of Mr King, formed a special one-off syndicate. Mr King claimed that he was entitled to a cut of the huge windfall, despite not being included, but insisted that he was a committed member of other syndicates organised by Mr Adams. It was claimed that the newly formed group of 14 was brought together between the dates of Friday 29th April and Wednesday 4th May, a period in which the two parties in question did not see one another.
A NSW Supreme Court heard of how all of the usual lottery players from the plant were included in the new team, with the exception of Mr King. The father-of-five, who won just $12 in the draw as part of the original syndicate, was adamant that his co-workers had conspired against him. His lawyer, Lachlan Gyles SC, claimed that a “ring fence” had been formed by the other members in an effort to prevent them losing out on around $200,000 each. Mr King regaled the court with how he confronted Mr Adams following the win: "Answer one question please: who of our original group has missed out or is not a recipient in this win?" Mr King then spoke to the syndicate directly, saying: "Don't worry about what you're going to lose. I've always been a part of this syndicate. There was only ever one syndicate."
However, Mr Adams, who admitted to speaking to Mr King “more harshly” than he should have done following the win, revealed that he had been running a host of lottery syndicates for a number of years, many of which did not include Mr King. "Brendan is my boss ... I like Brendan and I am sorry this has ended up in court," Mr Adams declared in his affidavit. Following much deliberation, the judge eventually found in favour of Mr Adams, ruling that the accused did not breach a duty of trust by forming a duplicate syndicate.
Mr King’s story is an example of why it is vital to draw up an agreement before entering into a syndicate with friends or family. Implementing an agreement can avoid the need for disputes over winnings should your syndicate succeed in landing a lavish prize. However, don’t feel that playing as part of a collective is all doom and gloom. Syndicates can be a fantastic way to socialise and win money at the same time, regardless of who takes part. Syndicates can also save you money in each draw as the group pool their money together in order to purchase more tickets and cover more combinations. Being part of a well-run syndicate could land you a huge prize in your next chosen lottery draw!