How to dupe a criminal

handcuffsHow do you trick a criminal? Well, using money to lure criminals out of hiding seemed to work for the Thai police force. It seems that most criminals are naturally greedy people judging by the results of the operation in the article above.

There was some interesting vocabulary here, too. The first interesting word was in the title:

Thai police dupe fugitives with fake prize draw

To ‘dupe‘ someone means to trick him or her. In this case, the trick is that the criminals were not getting a prize. Instead, they were getting a trip to jail! ‘Prize draw‘ is an interesting expression, too. We’ve seen it before on the World of Words in this article about the lottery in Italy.

The next interesting word is ‘nabbed‘. In this case, it means the criminals were arrested but is can also mean to ‘take’. For example “Who nabbed that last chocolate bar?”.

In the next paragraph, it is mentioned that Pol. Lt-Gen. Krisada Pankongchoen ‘masterminded‘ the plan meaning that he invented it and put it into action.

Slightly later in the article, we can see the phrasal verb ‘fall for (something)‘. This means to allow yourself to be tricked. We can also use ‘fall for (someone)‘ to mean starting to have romantic feelings about a person.

The last piece of vocabulary I would like to look at today is ‘pounced‘. This means to attack quickly in order to catch something. We often use it to talk about the way cats catch mice. They move very slowly until they are close to the mouse. Then, when they are close enough, they ‘pounce’ and move very quickly to catch the mouse. In this case, the police did a similar thing with the criminals.

Today’s image is by Foxumon.


Have you ever dreamt of winning the lottery? I certainly have! That’s why I was so interested in this article on the BBC News website yesterday. There’s a great word in the title:

Huge Italy jackpot still not won

A ‘jackpot‘ is the biggest prize offered in a competition or lottery. We often use it in the phrase ‘to hit the jackpot‘ meaning to win a jackpot or to suddenly become very successful.

The next interesting expression comes a little later on, where it is mentioned that:

Ficarra Mayor Basilio Ridolfo and his colleagues stumped up 115 euros from their pay packet to buy tickets.

The phrasal verb ‘stump up‘ means to pay a sum of money and a ‘pay packet‘ is the amount of money a person earns at work. People in the U.S. prefer to say ‘paycheck‘ rather than ‘pay packet‘.

There is another interesting word in the next paragraph:

Before the draw, Mr Ridolfo told Ansa news agency that they chose numbers which were connected with the town’s patron saint, the Virgin Mary of the Assumption.

A ‘draw‘ (sometimes ‘prize draw‘) is when the winning tickets are selected in a raffle or lottery.

The final pieces of vocabulary I would like to look at are in the following paragraph:

If Ficarra had struck it lucky, Mr Ridolfo said half of the winnings would be spent on municipal projects while the rest would be divided between the town’s 2,000 residents.

To ‘strike it lucky‘ is to have sudden good luck and ‘municipal projects‘ are projects related to that particular town or city.

What would you do if you ‘struck it lucky‘ and ‘hit the jackpot‘ in your national lottery?