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Friday, December 13, 2013
Urooj Khan, Lottery Winner Poisoned, Has Estate Spilt with Wife, Daughter

Urooj Khan, Lottery Winner Poisoned, Has Estate Spilt with Wife, Daughter

The wife and daughter of a man who was poisoned with cyanide after winning the Illinois lottery will spit that late man's estate.

Urooj Khan, 46, died in July, only a few days before he was to collect $425,000 in winnings. Khan died without a will, which led to an extended court battle.

Khan's wife will receive one-third of the lottery winnings, their house and Khan's dry cleaning business. Khan's daughter from another marriage will get two-thirds the lottery proceeds and some investments.

The settlement approved Wednesday also prevents either party from filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the other unless new evidence surfaces in a criminal investigation.

While Khan's death was determined to be from natural cause relatives felt something was not right and after almost six months, they managed to convince medical examiners to conduct another autopsy. The examination concluded that he had died as the result of ingesting cyanide, which can be lethal in the right doses.

With the new findings, the Chicago Police Department opened a homicide investigation to determine who killed Khan.

"It's pretty unusual," Stephen Cina, Cook County Medical Examiner, told NBC News at the time. "I've had one, maybe two cases out of 4,500 autopsies I've done."

The check was issued from the state Comptroller's Office on July 19, but was not cashed until Aug. 15; several weeks after Khan had tragically died.

There were no visible signs of trauma on Khan's body during the first exam. There was no post-mortem exam because the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office does not generally conduct them on people over the age of 45 unless the death was suspicious.

There are various ways that cyanide can enter the body either by being inhaled, swallowed or injected, according to Deborah Blum, a poison expert.

"It has a really strong, bitter taste, so you would know you had swallowed something bad if you had swallowed cyanide. But if you had a high enough dose it wouldn't matter, because ... a good lethal dose will take you out in less than five minutes," Blum told NBC News.

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