A US Judge Rules Bingo Machines are Illegal

In Alabama, a judge slammed down the gavel on the issue of illegal bingo machines. Some may recall the story where Law enforcement officials raided bingo halls in May and August that had been operating illegally in Jefferson County. More than 300 electronic bingo machines were seized last year and are now deemed illegal.

News reports indicate that the Jefferson County Presiding, Judge Scott Vowell, came to a decision and ordered that the machines be relinquished to the state of Alabama. The second part of the judge's order requires that the cash seized during last year's raid be put in the state's coffers as they are the profits of illegal gambling.

In December, Vowell heard arguments from both sides. The plantiffs, Jefferson County District Attorney's office, and the defendants, the operators of the bingo halls, expressed their opinions regarding the legality of the electronic bingo machines.

In his order, Vowell also states that the machines that defense attorneys have claimed only offered bingo games are "slot machines or gambling devices" and " do not play bingo" as outlined by state law.

Alabama Attorney General, Luther Strange, said Vowell's ruling supports his belief that many electronic bingo machines are actually illegal slot machines.

The machines were not destroyed as it was determined that the computers could be used in other areas.

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