Internet sweepstakes cafes cause crime rate hike

NC Sweeps skill game king 750x75EXCELSIOR DISTRICT – The increasing internet sweepstakes cafés triggered criminal activities and raises some community concerns in Excelsior District.

Supervisor John Avalos told there were at least five internet sweepstakes parlor in the District and mentioned one called Net Shop owned by a certain Thomas P. Lacey.

NC Skill Games 350x350According to Avalos, the sweepstakes parlor which operated 24 hours a day during weekends with a score of terminal computers in a 2,000 square feet property spiked the biggest number of concerns in the neighbourhood. He said those cafés attracted and exploited people who were desperate to win.

“You can just look in the window and see the slot machines going full bore,” Avalos commented.

Moreover, Ailed Paningbatan-Swan, official of the Excelsior Community Center, reported that their students were subject to sexual harassment by Net Shop patrons.

Net Shop like the rest of sweepstakes café in the area remained open because according to the law, if an establishment does not host gambling, it is legal. Therefore, the internet shops in the District are legitimate businesses and cannot be forced to shut down.

Police on lookout for 2 suspects in gaming café break-in

prereveal skill games 547WAYNE COUNTY – Authorities were on the lookout for two men accused of breaking into a gaming café in Wayne County, the Kenova Police Department reported.

Based on the police report, two males broke into Mitzi’s around early morning last week.

An investigator told, the suspects kicked the rear door and fled with about $1,000 coins collected from gaming machines.

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Anyone with information is asked to contact authorities at 304-453-5555.

Rockford says no to coffee gaming café

NC Plug N Play 750x150ROCKFORD – The City Council voted against the proposed coffee gaming café at Charles Street. The council voted 7-6 prohibiting the proposed coffee shop to offer alcoholic drinks.

NC Skill Games 350x350Earlier, two local business owners decide to transform an abandoned building on Charles Street into a coffee shop with a twist – a café with slot machines.

“We are going to spend a lot of money fixing it up. It is going to be a legitimate business and coffee shop,” said business owner Benny Salamone.

The Salamone brothers invested in a property considered as an eyesore in the city of Rockford. They proposed to call the business Caesars Place coffee shop.

“I respect what they’re trying to do, but I’m frustrated about it,” Salamone expressed.

Man shot near sweepstakes parlor in Charlotte

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75CHARLOTTE – A man was rushed to the hospital after he was shot outside a sweepstakes parlor at east Charlotte, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police reported.

NC Skill Games 350x350According to the police report, the victim was found wounded from a gunshot at a parking lot off Independence Boulevard on early Sunday morning.

The man with serious injuries was taken to a hospital immediately.

Officers were investigating potential witnesses from the sweepstakes parlor which was open during the shooting.

Anyone with information were asked to contact Crime Stoppers at (703) 334-7600.

2 suspects in internet café robbery arrested

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75ONSLOW COUNTY – Two men accused of robbing an internet sweepstakes café in Onslow County was arrested, the Onslow County Sheriff’s Office reported.

On July 21, two black male robbed Lucky Time Internet Café at NC Sweepstakes Option 350x350U.S. 258 Richlands Highway. According to the employee present during the robbery, the suspects threatened with a hand gun and demanded for money.

The suspects identified as 21-year-old Deontre Ulysses Randall, of New Bern, and 18-year-old Kyle Quinton Boone, of Jacksonville were arrested on Wednesday.

Both suspects were charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony larceny, and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. Randall was held under $415, 000 bond while Boone had $335,000 bond.

No one was reported hurt during the robbery.

Sweepstakes cafes reopen after court ruling

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75WESTLAKE – A county judge granted four gaming parlors temporary injunction to re-open.

In a letter issued in May 30, County Prosecutor Bill Mason’s offices issued a cease and desist to all gaming parlors in Westlake. However, the flashing lights and beeping sounds of internet sweepstakes was back in Westlake after Cuyahoga County Judge Nancy Russo allowed internet sweepstakes cafes to re-open.

NC Sweepstakes Option 350x350The preliminary injunction banned prosecutors from shutting down internet sweepstakes parlor offering electronic game of chance with prizes such as telephone card and internet access.

Westlake Law Director John Wheeler told there were at least 6 sweepstakes parlor in the city.

“When they first started coming around Westlake, we did our research. The consensus was that they are probably lawful entities because they’re sweepstakes-based,” Wheeler stated.

The county viewed the sweepstakes industry as gambling. Operators, however, argued that they were in compliance with the law because winners were already pre-determined with pre-reveal software.

“The county initiated the cease and desist order. We’re going to let them handle it,” said Wheeler.

Internet sweepstakes café back in NC

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75CHARLOTTE – When internet sweepstakes operators learned about the latest software which made games legal, sweepstakes parlors sprang again in North Carolina.

“What we’re told is, as long as it’s in compliance with pre-reveal, it doesn’t violate the law,” said Rockingham County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Kevin Southern

In Whiteville, a Dublin elected official arrested for illegal operation of video gaming café told pre-reveal video machines were legal under the state’s law.

NC Skill Games 350x350According to Dublin Councilman Jeffrey Scott Smith who was arrested and charged with two counts of misdemeanor for operating video gaming machines at Gold Rush Internet Café, the machines were legal under the North Carolina law because those who purchased internet time were already notified of the winnings before the game.

“Those same games are running in over 40 counties in the state of North Carolina. There are other district attorneys and sheriff’s departments that agree that our software is compliant,” told Smith.

In Laurinburg, District Attorney Kristy Newton declared the joint task force called the Hoke and Scotland County Joint Gaming Task Force to maintain the illegality of possessing, operating, or playing internet sweepstakes machines in North Carolina. The task force sent out orders or forced closure to all sweepstakes establishments in the area.

The cease and desist order with a deadline to comply replicates the measure law enforcement used after a Supreme Court in 2013 banned sweepstakes in the state and the injunction against enforcement was lifted.

Yet, the state law left a loophole for certain types of gaming software.

Lauriburg City Attorney Bill Floyd contested, “the legislature has left a statute in place that, despite whatever anybody says or you hear, is unclear as to its applicability to some of the software that’s being used in these establishments.”

Sweepstakes cafés face uncertain future

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75AURORA – An internet parlor tucked in a nondescript strip mall faced an uncertain future as Rep. Polly Lawrence, Rep. Polly Lawrence, R-Roxborough Park, called cybercafés illegal gambling.

Lawrence told that though the cybercafés did not look or sound like casinos, these were essentially illegal gambling that feed on those least able to afford it, targeting seniors and low-income patrons.

NC Skill Games 350x350According to bill sponsored by Lawrence, any establishments in Colorado equipped with simulated with a gambling device used to award prizes to customers could be driven out of business.

“Their computers are set up to work exactly like slot machines. But there are none of the background checks or requirements that casinos have in place — like having to have a certain amount paid out,” Lawrence said.

Currently, the state only allows gambling in three communities namely Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek.

“To me, these businesses are a violation of the Constitution and what the people voted on,” told Lawrence, whose district covers Cripple Creek.

However, during the2014 legislative session, both the House of Representatives and Senate in Colorado adjourned with HB1392 still pending on the table. The House already approved the bill and it’s up for the Senate to sign it to a law.

Once the Senate approve HB1392, the state of would be the fourth in line next to Florida, Mississippi and Ohio banning internet sweepstakes cafes which the Colorado Attorney General’s office claimed as illegal gambling storefronts.

In their defense, sweepstakes owners and operators argue their businesses should not be tagged as illegal gambling because they are simply selling internet time to customers with internet cards.

Gaming campaigns kick off for November ballot

NC sweepstakes Game Conversion 750x75BOSTON – Groups on both side of the casino repeal measure set by the Supreme Judicial Court’s on the November ballot started campaigns this week.

In June, the SJC decided to put the fate of the 2011 expanded gambling law which allowed three regional resort casinos and one slot parlor on the November ballot.

“We conclude that the Legislature and, through initiative, the voters of Massachusetts may choose to abolish casino and slot parlor gambling and pari-mutuel wagering on simulcast greyhound racing, and doing so would not constitute a taking of property without compensation,” told Justice Ralph D. Gants.

convert your sweepstakes today 350x350A pro-casino group funded by gambling giants MGM Resorts International, MGM Resorts International, Mohegan Sun and Penn National Gaming called Committee to Protect Massachusetts Jobs told they expect to launch their extensive campaign after three weeks of planning.

Between now and Election Day of November 4, we will be engaging voters across the Commonwealth about the benefits that gaming will bring to Massachusetts,” said Wooten Johnson, Campaign Manager for Vote No on Question 3.

According to Johnson, their campaign will create 10,000 new jobs and 6,500 construction jobs; ensure that the communities that already voted to host a casino can get the jobs, business, and revenue they voted for; and  put an end to shipping the residents’ hard-earned money and tax dollars out of state to Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Maine.

On the other hand, Stephen Eiseleof the Repeal the Casino Deal, a statewide organization opposing casino and slots said they will reach out to undecided voters who have not yet voted on the local casino plans.

Eisele also mentioned two dozen volunteers canvassed in the communities of Winthrop, Bourne, Lexington, East Longmeadow and Ludlow while another dozen volunteers engaged in phone banking in Springfield and East Boston.

“In ruling to allow the referendum, the justices have upheld the standards of the initiative petition law, a law that defines the very core of American democracy, the citizens’ right to vote on matters of substantial importance to the entire population,” said Repeal the Casino Deal attorney Thomas O. Bean.

2 masked men robbed casino at gunpoint

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SIOUX FALLS – Two masked men robbed a casino on Sunday morning, the Sioux Falls Police Department reported.

Based on the police report, about 1 in the morning, two armed men masked in bandanas entered Happy Jack’s Casino at W. 12th Street.

According to the casino staff, one of the suspects threatened the clerk with a handgun and ordered the clerk to lie down on the floor while the other suspect ordered patrons to look the other way. The suspects then removed the till from the register and fled the scene with an undisclosed amount of cash.NC Sweepstakes Option 350x350

The first suspect was described as 5-foot-10 black male with medium built in white long sleeved shirt and black bandana while the other was wearing a blue bandana.

No one was reported injured during the robbery.