Alabama Supreme Court orders shutdown of 3 illegal gambling operations
The Alabama Supreme Court has again ruled that electronic gambling at three Alabama casinos is illegal and must end.
The unanimous Sept. 30 decision in State v. Epic Tech called the facilities a “public nuisance” and said the casinos are operating illegal electronic bingo machines.
The decision calls for local officials in Lowndes and Macon counties to issue injunctions for White Hall Entertainment and Southern Star Entertainment, both in Lowndes County, and VictoryLand Casino in Macon County, to cease using electronic bingo machines in their facilities. Local officials had previously refused to take action to shut down electronic gambling in the facilities, prompting Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall to take action.
In a statement issued Sept. 30, Marshall reiterated that what the casinos call bingo machines are really video slot machines. Marshall praised the ruling, the latest in an ongoing battle between the state and gambling interests.
“The Alabama Supreme Court’s opinion makes clear what my office has maintained from the start: these gambling enterprises are not only patently illegal under Alabama law, but also a menace to public health, morals, safety and welfare,” Marshall said. “Today’s decision will forbid the Southern Star, White Hall and Victoryland casinos from offering their slot-machine gambling to the public.”
Marshall said a separate lawsuit to cease illegal gambling at the Greenetrack casino in Greene County continues to be adjudicated in court.
In June, the Alabama Supreme Court in a separate case ordered Greenetrack to pay $76 million in unpaid taxes and interest owed to the Alabama Department of Revenue for profits the casino reaped from illegal gambling.