Catarina Ruela jackpot winner

A woman from New Jersey in the US has been confirmed as the winner of a $1.3 million, equivalent to £830,000 or €1.04 million, progressive jackpot at the Harrah’s online casino this week.

Cathy Ruela, 31, became the latest online slots instant millionaire when she triggered the progressive jackpot sum at back on Thursday 6th November, 2014 and the details relating to her win are now being officially released.

Online gambling was made legal in the state of New Jersey in November 2013, but only available to citizens of that state. Delaware and Nevada have similar laws in place.

Ruela, from Morris Plains, had signed up to the online casino back in February of this year and had previously played at the land-based Harrah’s Casino in Atlantic City. When she signed up, she was given 20 free spins on the Millionaire Genie slot at the online casino and won $300 on her first play. Months later, on the same slot, she triggered the progressive jackpot.

Millionaire Genie is a 5 reel, 15 payline slot from Random Logic with a progressive jackpot but the slot also has a reputation for paying out big on its free spins bonus round. The free spins bonus round is triggered when players hit three or more genie Scatters across the reels. There is also a Genie’s Palace Bonus that is triggered when players hit three or more girl Scatters on the reels.

Ruela admitted that she did not know if she had won $1 million or $1,000. It was only when she sat back and took in the message that was appearing on her computer screen that she realised she had become an instant millionaire. Even then, she still rang the Harrah’s Casino rep to double check her winnings.

In a statement released this week, Ruela said “You know when I’m at Harrah’s Atlantic City, there’s bells ringing and people all come over and it gets verified by a staffer right there. So when it hit on I stared at the computer screen for a moment trying to digest it all.”

She added “But I’m happy to report it indeed is the same as in the physical casino, and even better, I got to celebrate in my pyjamas at home.”

Ruela confirmed that she plans on spending the winnings on erasing her debt, saving for a college education for her son and then spending a percentage of the money on Christmas presents for the family.