Florida's Internet Cafe Gambling Case in Court

Published Thursday, October 10, 2013 - Online-Casinos.com
Florida's Internet Cafe Gambling Case in Court

Jacksonville attorney Kelly Mathis is in the hot seat with allegations he is guilty of 104 counts he now faces, in the Florida case involving the network of storefront casinos under the guise of a veterans' charity. The charges that seem to have him between a rock and hard place include racketeering, conspiracy, helping run a lottery and possessing slot machines.

According to an Associated Press report the jurors have heard the arguments from both teams of lawyers and have gone into deliberation. The jurors have to decide whether the lawyer acted in good faith and in accordance with the laws of Florida. The jurors main decision is whether or not the games were promotional games or were really gambling.

Mathis' client, Allied Veterans of the World was operating over fifty outlets that offered sweepstakes like gambling. Not long into the first session jurors asked to see a digital version of a Department of Agriculture training manual. Defense teams have said the contents of the manual solidifies their contention that the online cafes were indeed legal. Apparently only a hard copy is available. Fifty seven people have been indicted in the Allied Veterans case.

The Lt. Governor of Florida Jennifer Carroll was a principal in a public relations firm that handled the Allied Veterans account. Her involvement led to her resignation and a ban on all Internet cafes in the state of Florida. Carroll was not charged with any wrong doing in the affair. Several of the defendants reached plea deals with the prosecutors.

Mathis insists he is innocent but with 104 charges he will be lucky to walk away from this case. His defense attorneys say the prosecution has misinterpreted the gaming promotions as gambling.

Defense attorney Mitch Stone said, "They haven't proven it's gambling, number one, and they haven't proven that Mr. Mathis was a part of the organization, number two,"

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