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- Florida Gaming Watch has links to the latest news in FL and many other states offering Internet Sweepstakes Cafes and Arcades
- Ohio gets green light for Sweepstakes crackdown
- North Carolina cracking down on Sweepstakes cafes
- Jury convicts Kelly Mathis on 103 out of 104 counts including racketeering and gambling related charges.
- While an appeal is certain, this outcome could negatively impact Internet Cafes that are still open in the state of Florida.
- While many Internet Cafes in Florida have been are still waiting on the sidelines for clarification of the new law, some are taking bold action to challenge it. Some cafes have opened in Jacksonville and are hoping to get others to join them. Those that have re-opened await action by state and local authorities to challenge the law in court. Those operators and their customers risk arrest by violating the law and could face stiff penalties if challenges to the law are unsuccessful. Expect the Kelly Mathis conviction to signal more enforcement and aggressive interpretation of the law.
- Ohio, North Carolina, and California have seen recent aggressive action by authorities to shut down Internet Cafes offering sweepstakes promotions at storefront locations.
- In states facing challenges to Internet Cafe Sweepstakes, most of the strong opposition is fueled by well funded lobbyists controlled by large casino and gaming operators. States that have forced sweepstakes businesses to close have seen significant increases in lottery sales while only small increases in actual casino spending. The clear motivation by the state governments is to eliminate the competition of the sweepstakes vendors and increase their own revenue through lotteries and agreements with large gaming vendors.
- Former Internet Cafe customers are looking for opportunities to play sweepstakes at home provided by trusted vendors that now offer play at home options. Many games are now available to play at home. Play at home sweepstakes offer the same excitement and prizes as those offered in the cafes and the games can be played on almost any device that can access the internet. These devices include chromebooks, laptops, tablets, and smart phones which can be purchased for $200 – $300, refurbished units can be even less. Devices can be purchased at TigerDirect.com, Newegg.com, Best Buy, or even Wal-Mart.