This article is available in: HTML PDF

Tangled web: investigating Canadian lottery scandals

Garry Smith


This commentary examines the major lottery scandals in Ontario and British Columbia that broke in 2006, with particular emphasis on the precipitating conditions, sustaining factors, consequences, lessons learned, and resolutions. The aim of this article is to identify fundamental causes and common threads so that future lottery scandals might be averted. The scandals discussed here resulted from a combustible mix of easy-to-circumvent rules, profit-seeking agendas, and light-touch self-regulation. Although tighter controls were imposed on the two provincial lottery corporations after the scandals, neither organization appears to have markedly altered its pre-scandal culture or business plan. Various gambling regulatory styles are noted in the paper and because the current governmental practice of self-regulation is thought to have contributed to the two Canadian lottery scandals, a system of independent gambling oversight is recommended.

Full Text:



Copyright © 2020 | Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
Editor-in-chief: Nigel E. Turner, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Vivien Rekkas, Ph.D. (contact)