Tag Archives: allied veterans

Law Enforcement Raids Target Non-Compliant Games

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Pre-Reveal Games Not The Target of Law Enforcement

Greenville, NC – Multiple law enforcement agencies in Pitt County serve over 25 search warrants to convenience stores operating sweepstakes machines. Officers began their operation at 9AM. They seized 95 sweepstakes machines and over $33,000 in cash.uncle sam

The raids and seizures started at the City Gas store on North Greene Street. Sheriff deputies executed a warrant to seize their sweepstakes machines.

At about the same time, teams from across the county were executing other search warrants. In total, the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office and Greenville Police Department targeted 29 stores.

Chief Hassan Aden, a major player in the operation says this will reduce the amount of crime in Pitt County. He says criminals target these businesses because of the amount of cash they carry.

Officers went under cover and have been monitoring complaints since last year. They say they did so to cover their bases. So if they didn’t find anything on Tuesday, they’d still have enough to file charges.

“We gave them a warning, told them that if they were using that particular type of machine with that software we’re going to enforce it.,” District Attorney Kimberly Robb said. The new Pre-Reveal Games are the only known games to have won court cases regarding their legality against NC sweepstakes ban bill HB-80 that went into effect December of 2010.

The business is quite lucrative. Sheriff Elks says the owner of City Gas pulled out $2,000 and said he made that in one night.

Police haven’t arrested anyone in connection to this operation yet, but says arrests are pending. Pre-Reveal-GoldAt this time officers are holding onto the machines and cash they collected to later prosecute the owners in court.

Law Enforcement in NC Demand the Removal of the Illegal Games

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..Issue May Be in Mix of Legal and Non-Legal Games..

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Armed with multiple wins across the state, handfuls of video sweepstakes parlors are still open, but after years of legal maneuvering a letter from the district attorney could start the a new round of long and costly court battles.

Some say issue is that most parlors are running compliant and non-compliant games.

“You are hereby directed to cease and desist operation of your illegal video gaming machines not later than December 1, 2013,” or, the letter states, they could face criminal charges.

One owner of a gaming parlor told WJSA he plans run what he considers to be “compliant and legal games, these games are different from what the general assembly banned back in 2010, these games are pre-reveal

The people who were  inside playing on Thursday afternoon said that they’ve became use to the fight between gaming providers and the state.

“It’s the same old fight”, Johnny Conner said, because he’s retired, and comes here almost every day because he doesn’t have much else to do.

Donita Sanchez has been working at WIN-CAFÉ sweepstakesWIN-CAFE SWEEPS 250x250 for over 2 years and supporting her mother with the money she makes at the café.

“If they close us down then I’ll have to find another job or file for unemployment, the government just doesn’t make sense sometimes”

According to Sanchez, the parlors that chose not to upgrade their games to “Pre Reveal”  had already locked their doors.

With millions of dollars at stake some may still try to spin the legal wheel and find a way around the order.

An injunction has been issued in some counties in NC

In some counties, some parlor owners have been granted injunctions to prevent law enforcement from shuttering their businesses and it is expected that the same will happen in this case.

Florida Sweepstakes Cafe Trial Should Go To Jury Today

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State’s Case is Weak As The Nation Waits for the Outcome.

SANFORD – Jurors could get the Kelly Mathis trial today, Mathis, a Jacksonville lawyer or a criminal mastermind who helped a group of military veterans build a $300 million empire that only looked like a chain of Internet cafés.

Jury May Get The Mathis Trial Today

The six-member jury could return a verdict today on 100 charges Mathis faces, including racketeering, conspiracy and possessing slot machines because of his work at Allied Veterans of the World.

If Mathis is acquitted, it would be a monumental embarrassment for the state, particularly Attorney General Pam Bondi, who held a confident news conference March 13, the day Mathis and more than 50 co-defendants were arrested statewide, and described Allied Veterans as a major criminal enterprise that used internet cafes as a ‘front’.

Pam Bondi Led A High Profile Case Against Allied Veterans

Seminole County Sheriff Don Eslinger, who launched the investigation, named “Reveal the Deal” was the law enforcement ringleader, made one of his captains its lead detective and re-assigned statewide prosecutors two of his county attorneys.

Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, resigned under pressure the day Mathis and his co-defendants were arrested because of her ties to the group: Her Jacksonville public relations firm had done contract work for Allied Veterans.

The argument for the jurors will be whether the personal computers that customers used in the internet cafes across Florida storefronts were slot machines under Florida law or only looked and sounded like them. Numerous state officals across the state called Allied Veterans business model legal.ReelDeal

Mitch Stone, the defendants defense attorney,  argued they were not. Allied’s storefronts were Internet cafes, he said, in the business of selling Internet time at 20 cents a minute. If customers wanted to use Allied’s computers to enter a series of lawful “promotional” games, including those called “Money Bunny” and “Wheel of Riches,” they had that option, he said.

The games, he argued, were based on computer software that made them legal under Florida’s complex sweepstakes law, akin to McDonald’s Monopoly promotion.

The trial began Sept. 16, and several repeat customers testified early on that they went to Allied storefronts solely to gamble, although technically they didnt complete the action of gambling because of the lack of ‘consideration’

Mathis is the only defendant to come to trial, so far. Prosecutors characterized him as the ‘mastermind’ behind the operation, but as the case against him progressed, major weaknesses in the state’s case developed.

Purchase A Product, Like French Fries, and Get Free Sweepstakes Entries..Sound Familiar ?

Before the trial began, the state dropped more than 50 gambling charges against Mathis and during it, the judge threw out 50 money laundering counts.That left jurors with 100 counts to decide.

Roughly a dozen co-defendants earlier negotiated plea deals. Most have wound up with sentences that require no jail time, including Allied’s most senior company officials.

Several months after the arrests, Florida legislators voted to make Internet cafes illegal, and Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill into law

Mathis Trial Starts In Florida

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SANFORD, Florida – The legal adviser of Allied Veterans of the World faces the court with 200 charges of money laundering and illegal gambling.

The prosecution has named Kelly Mathis, a Jacksonville lawyer, as the brain behind the veteran’s charity gambling scam. They say the fraudulent charity runs a chain of internet cafes with $290M worth of gambling operation and only commits 2% of its income to the charity.scales

Authorities report Mathis is the one who establish the internet cafes, where to operate and who will man it. They also declared Mathis has earned a total of $6 million from the gambling industry and has established 112 businesses.

However, Mathis argues that he simply acts as a legal counsellor to the veteran’s charity. He says the verdict will be in favour as he contemplates he committed no crime and no evidence will indict him.

Mathis legal advisor Mitch Stone told reporters that the prosecution cannot sue a lawyer simply for practicing the law.

Back in March, Mathis along with Jerry Bass, commander of the Allied Veterans of the World and a score of other people was arrested in Duval County as a result of a six –year cross county investigation.

The investigation which involves the US Secret Service and the IRS has cued the resignation of Florida’s Governor Jennifer Carroll. Though Carroll has also served as a consultant to Allied Veterans, she was not charged.

The prosecution has said the bogus charity uses internet service as a gimmick to hide its real motive. They offer internet service, but in reality, people only go there to gamble and play.

According to Stone, all the internet cafes are legal. In fact, the Department of Agriculture together with some politician like Attorney General Pam Bondi regulates it.

In their defense, both Mathis and Stone insist the sweepstakes in Allied Veterans is similar to Coca-Cola prize in a cap and McDonald’s scratch-off tickets.