This law enforcement action was taken in response to illegal gambling operations. The search warrant was served this morning at the VictoryLand casino in Shorter, AL.
"Today's actions are the culmination of an investigative process over the last several months," said Attorney General Strange. "From my first day in office, I have worked to ensure that illegal gambling laws are enforced consistently across the state."
As a result of the Attorney General's efforts, the country's largest gambling machine manufacturers removed their machines from Alabama in 2011, including the removal of all gambling machines at VictoryLand. The casino, however, opened in December 2012 with so-called "electronic bingo" machines that state law enforcement agents determined were illegal.
"My office worked to try to resolve this matter with minimal controversy," said Attorney General Strange. "Unfortunately, the VictoryLand casino was operating in open defiance of the rule of law and we have been left with no alternative but to treat this as we would any other law enforcement matter."
The search warrant served today culminated in the seizure of several hundred gambling machines and an undisclosed amount of cash from VictoryLand. These machines, along with the seized money, will be held as evidence and will be subject to a forfeiture procedure in the Circuit Court of Macon County.
"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. These individuals stand to make millions 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," said Attorney General Strange.