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HBO's 'McMillions' Is A True Jacksonville Crime Story

Jacksonville skyline seen in a still from the documentary
HBO via YouTube
Jacksonville features prominently in "McMillions."

As HBO subscribers might already know, its new docuseries McMillions has big ties to Jacksonville. 

The first two episodes are out in the series, looking at the con that allowed one man to rig the popular McDonald’s Monopoly game for years.  The FBI in Jacksonville investigated the scam in the ‘90s.

FBI Jacksonville spokeswoman Amanda Videll said viewers are hearing from several of the agents who worked the case two decades ago — some who are still working today.

“And when the directors came to us and said they were interested in highlighting the case, we thought it would be a great opportunity to participate and to tell people this wild story about this investigation that took place,” Videll said.

The case began when a tip came into the Jacksonville FBI office, and the investigation ultimately turned up criminal connections to the Jacksonville community and far beyond.

From HBO: “The series draws on exclusive firsthand accounts and archival footage, featuring the FBI agents who brought down the gaming scam; McDonald’s corporate executives, who were themselves defrauded; the lawyers who tried the case; and the culprits and prizewinners who profited from the complicated scheme, as well as the individuals who were often unwittingly duped into being a part of the ruse.”

McMillions is now airing and streaming on HBO. An accompanying podcast about the Monopoly scandal is also available on iTunes.

Michelle Corum joined WJCT as "Morning Edition" host in 2012 and has worked in public broadcasting as an announcer and reporter for public radio stations in Lawrence, Kansas, and Interlochen, Michigan. She also manages WJCT's Radio Reading Service for sight-impaired listeners.