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Issue Date: Vol. 51, No. 3, March 2011, Posted On: 2/24/2011

Alaska To Charge Pull-Tab Operator With Bribery

Marcus Webb
pull-tab operator, pull-tab business, Abraham J. Spicola, Lucky Times Pull-Tabs, amusement business, arcade game, coin machine business, coin machine, jukebox, pinball machine, coin-op news

SPENARD, AK -- A pull-tab operator here has come under fire from Alaska Dept. of Revenue investigators who allege that he has solicited $10,000 kickbacks or bribes. Abraham J. Spicola, owner of the Lucky Times Pull-Tabs, is accused of asking for kickbacks from two nonprofit organizations that have state government permits to run his games, and benefit from them.

Grand jury indictments are expected soon, along with lesser charges. | SEE STORY

Spicola, who became famous statewide in 2008 for an unrelated legal raffle business, denied the accusations and said he looks forward to proving his innocence in court.

The operator possesses unusual knowledge of Alaska's state laws on games and gambling. Before entering the raffle and pull-tab businesses, Spicola was himself an investigator in the Alaska Dept. of Revenue's gaming unit. Two years ago his legal raffles made him a high-profile figure after he paid $500,000 to at least one winner.

Pull-tab games feature $1 or $2 cards with perforated tabs; players tear open the tabs to see if their card is a winner.

Spicola said he would continue to operate Lucky Times during any trial.

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