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Issue Date: Vol. 52, No. 8, August 2012, Posted On: 7/16/2012

Video Sweepstakes And Poker Venues Are Raided in So. Carolina, Georgia

Marcus Webb
TAGS: Midlands SC, Clayton GA, state police gambling raids, video sweepstakes, video poker, South Carolina's State Law Enforcement Division, SLED, Alan Wilson, illegal gambling equipment, payoff poker games, George prize games

MIDLANDS, SC and CLAYTON, GA -- State police staged raids on sweepstakes videogame and video poker locations in early July in both of these cities.

South Carolina's State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) joined the Richland County sheriff's office in raiding two Midlands sweeps cafés on July 11, arresting three people from one location and seizing a total of 38 machines between the two venues.

South Carolina State Attorney General Alan Wilson has issued an opinion that sweeps devices are illegal gambling equipment, but SLED officers have been reluctant to act against the market because uncertainty remains about their legal status. | SEE STORY

In Georgia, on the same day, officials from the Clayton County District Attorney's office and the Forest Park Police raided video poker locations. Five individuals were arrested, and detectives seized $50,000 in cash and an unknown number of gambling machines. State law permits adult-themed videos such as those with gambling motifs but forbids cash and merchandise rewards for winners.

Georgia's governor and top law enforcement officials announced their intent to crack down on sweeps videos in the Peach State some 11 months ago; heightened enforcement against payoff poker games may be a related development. | SEE STORY

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