Under the Dome

More trouble for the internet sweeps industry

The AP’s Michael Biesecker has dug up an interesting follow to the internet sweepstakes case out of Florida that involves a major campaign contributor in North Carolina. This week the sweeps café industry vowed to continue to push for legalization in this state.

Here’s how it starts:

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Fresh off a nearly $300 million racketeering case involving a veterans' charity that benefited from simulated gambling at Internet cafes, Florida regulators will investigate a children's cancer group connected to a similar operation that is four times bigger.

The new probe comes in response to Associated Press inquiries about Children's Cancer Cooperative, a group that operates out of a South Carolina bingo parlor, shares a lawyer with Allied Veterans of the World and has collected cash from more than 200 of the sweepstakes cafes in Florida.

In exchange for the money that has flowed into the Children's Cancer Cooperative from the cafes, the charity's name is listed as sponsoring sweepstakes prizes offered at the cafes, giving players the impression money lost on the fast-moving games mimicking Vegas-style slots goes to help sick kids. ...

Records found by the AP show the Children's Cancer Cooperative was registered in Florida in 2009. It is also registered in at least six other states where sweepstakes games are popular — Texas, Alabama, North Carolina, Kentucky, Virginia and Iowa.

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