Attorney: Deal aids poisoned lotto winner's widow
CHICAGO (AP) — A lawyer who represents the widow of a Chicago man who was poisoned with cyanide after winning the lottery says most of the businessman's $2 million estate should go to his client.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported (http://bit.ly/TSuYZX) Thursday that attorney Al-Haroon Husain showed an agreement signed by Urooj Khan months before his death that names his wife, Shabana Ansari, as benefactor for his interest in a dry cleaning operation.
The deal was signed May 2, 2012, said Husain, who is representing Ansari in a court case over the estate.
Khan's brother, Imtiaz Khan, called the agreement "nonsense."
Urooj Khan, 46, died July 20 as he was about to collect $425,000 in lottery winnings. His death initially was ruled a result of natural causes. But a relative whose identity remains a mystery asked for further tests that revealed in November that he had been poisoned.
His body was exhumed in January for more testing.
Ansari and other relatives have denied any role in his death and expressed a desire to learn the truth.
Khan had moved to the U.S. from his home in Hyderabad, India, in 1989, setting up several dry cleaning businesses and buying into some real estate investments.
Despite having foresworn gambling after making the haj pilgrimage to Mecca in 2010, Khan bought a lottery ticket in June. He said winning the lottery meant everything to him and that he planned to use his winnings to pay off mortgages, expand his business and donate to St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital.
He was just days from receiving his winnings when he died before dawn on July 20.
The night before, Khan ate dinner with his wife, daughter and father-in-law at their house. Sometime that night, Khan awoke feeling ill. He died the next morning at a hospital.
Khan died without a will, opening the door to a court battle. The businessman's widow and siblings fought for months over his estate, including the lottery check.