FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 19, 2013
AG, WALKER COUNTY DA ANNOUNCE ADDITIONAL LAW
ENFORCEMENT ACTION AGAINST ELECTRONIC BINGO
(MONTGOMERY)— Attorney General Luther Strange thanked District Attorney Bill Adair for his office’s partnership in a continuing strong initiative to shut down so-called “electronic bingo” casinos in Walker County. Attorney General Strange and District Attorney Adair provided updates today on law enforcement actions in an ongoing joint effort between their offices.
Most recently, on July 9, Special Agents of the Attorney General’s Office and investigators of the District Attorney’s Office shut down an illegal gambling operation involving about 12 machines at a private building located on Pine Loop in Jasper.
Previously this year, on the evening of January 10, agents of the Attorney General’s Office and the District Attorney’s Office shut down illegal gambling operations involving 15 machines at the Arrowhead Golf Course on Holly Grove Road, and involving an additional 20 machines at a private building on Valley Loop Road. The Arrowhead Golf Course also was the subject of a similar law enforcement operation in September.
“These actions are the culmination of a joint investigation by the Attorney General’s Office and the Walker County District Attorney’s Office, with assistance provided by the Walker County Sheriff’s Office,” said Attorney General Strange. “From my first day in office, I have acted to ensure that illegal gambling laws are enforced consistently across the state. These cooperative law enforcement efforts in Walker County demonstrate our commitment to do so effectively.”
District Attorney Adair stated, “I commend Attorney General Strange and his office on their commitment to following and enforcing the law and the invaluable assistance in time and manpower that his office has provided.”
Altogether, the joint investigative efforts of these offices so far has resulted in the seizure of approximately 92 machines, two guns, and about $7,500 in cash from a total of about 20 gambling facilities that have been shut down. The machines are estimated to have an average value of about $2,000 each. These machines, along with the seized money, will be held as evidence and will be subject to forfeiture procedures in the Circuit Court of Walker County.
“Until the Alabama Legislature acts to create an effective deterrent for illegal gambling, individuals will continue to engage in illegal gambling activity and openly defy the law,” said Attorney General Strange. “These individuals stand to make thousands of dollars in illegal gambling profits while risking only a slap-on-the-wrist misdemeanor charge. Law enforcement will continue to be forced to expend valuable resources to deal with the growing problem. The Legislature must change that weakness in our law and create a badly needed deterrent for illegal gambling by increasing the penalty for operating an illegal slot machine casino to a felony.”