Wife says poisoned lottery winner had no enemies

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 8, 2013 at 7:40 pm •  Published: January 8, 2013
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Authorities plan to exhume Khan's body in the next few weeks in hopes they might be able to test additional tissue samples and bolster evidence if the case goes to trial.

"It's always good if and when the case goes to trial to have as much data as possible," said Cook County Medical Examiner Stephen Cina. He added that he did not believe additional testing would change the conclusion that Khan was a homicide victim, saying those comprehensive toxicology results were validated in the lab.

"Based on the investigative information we have now and the (toxicology results), we're comfortable where we are right now," he said.

Ansari, 32, moved to the U.S. from India after marrying Khan 12 years ago.

Khan and his wife were born in Hyderabad, a city in southern India, and their story is a typical immigrant's tale of settling in a new land with big dreams and starting a business. Their daughter, Jasmeen, now 17, is a student here.

"Work was his passion," Ansari said of her husband, adding that she plans to stay in the U.S. and keep his businesses running.

"I'm just taking care of his hard work," she said.

She recalled going on the hajj, the Muslim pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, with her husband in 2010, an awe-inspiring trip that was a first for both of them. One of Islam's pillars requires every able-bodied Muslim to make the journey at least once in their lifetime.

She said her husband returned even more set on living a good life and stopped buying the occasional lottery ticket.

Nonetheless, he couldn't resist buying one for an instant lottery game in June while at a 7-Eleven near his home in the West Rogers Park neighborhood on the city's north side. It was a $1 million winner.

Khan opted for a lump sum of slightly more than $600,000. After taxes, the winnings amounted to about $425,000, said lottery spokesman Mike Lang. The check was issued on July 19, the day before Khan died.

Some other states allow winners to remain anonymous, but Illinois requires most winning ticket holders to appear for a news conference and related promotions, partly to prove that the state pays out prizes. Khan's win didn't draw much media attention, and Lang noted that press events for $1 million winners are fairly typical.

"We do several news conferences a month for various amounts," he said.

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Associated Press writer Don Babwin contributed to this report.