MONTGOMERY, Ala. (Legal Newsline) - Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange announced Friday that his office, in collaboration with Walker County District Attorney Bill Adair, took actions recently to shut down several electronic bingo casinos.
The two offices collaborated to seize about 80 bingo machines, two guns and $1,441 in cash from a total of seven illegal gambling facilities that were shut down. The most recent effort occurred Jan. 10 and involved agents from both offices. The agents shut down illegal gambling operations at the Arrowhead Golf Course and at a private building in Walker County.
"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," Strange said. "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."
The machines and the seized money will be held as evidence and will be subject to a forfeiture procedure to be filed in Walker County Circuit Court.
Strange said that new laws must be put in place to prevent illegal gambling in the state of Alabama.
"Until the Alabama legislature acts to create an effective deterrent for large scale illegal gambling, individuals will continue to engage in illegal gambling activity and openly defy the law," Strange said. "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 large scale illegal gambling by increasing the penalty for operating an illegal slot machine casino to a felony."
Adair lauded Strange's office on its commitment to following and enforcing laws related to illegal gambling operations.