Family quarrels add intrigue to lotto winner death
BY AP Wire Service
Sunday, January 13, 2013
1/13/13 at 5:51 AM
CHICAGO (AP) - In the week since news surfaced that a Chicago man was poisoned to death with cyanide just before he was to collect a lottery payout, surprising details about his convoluted family saga have trickled out.
Urooj Khan's widow and siblings fought for months over the businessman's estate, including the lottery check. His father-in-law owed tens of thousands of dollars in taxes. His 17-year-old daughter from a previous marriage had moved out of her stepmom's home and into his sister's after his death. Then his ex-wife came forward, announcing in anguish that she hadn't seen her daughter in more than a decade and hadn't known she was in the U.S.
The slowly emerging family backstory and ever-expanding cast of characters have added layers of intrigue to a baffling case in which authorities have revealed little and everyone is wondering: Who did it?
The victim's relatives hint at family squabbles. And Khan's wife, Shabana Ansari, has endured clutches of reporters outside the family home and business, asking what dinner she made for Khan on the night he died.
"She's just as curious as anyone else to get to the bottom of what caused her husband's death," said Al-Haroon Husain, who is representing Ansari in the case that will divide up Khan's estate, including the $425,000 in lottery winnings.
Ansari and other relatives have denied any role in his death and expressed a desire to learn the truth.
Authorities remain tight-lipped about who they may suspect. In the coming weeks, they plan to exhume the 46-year-old Indian immigrant's body.
He was 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.
Sometime that night, Khan awoke feeling ill and collapsed as he tried to get up from a chair, his wife has said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Khan died without a will, leading to a court battle.
Original Print Headline: Family quarrels add intrigue in lotto case
Urooj Khan: The 46-year-old Indian immigrant was just days from receiving a lottery payout of $425,000 when he died before dawn on July 20. The night before, Khan ate dinner with his wife, daughter and father-in-law. Sometime that night, he awoke feeling ill and collapsed as he tried to get up from a chair, his wife has said.