News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Meaden & Moore

The Holden Arboretum


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Courts and Crime


N.J. cos. that supplied internet cafes admit to criminal charges in Ohio
VS2 and associates also agree to stay out of the state
by WKSU's M.L. SCHULTZE


Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
 
A half dozen internet cafes were raided in April, and the companies that supplied their software and hardware have admitted to criminal charges.
Download (WKSU Only)

A New Jersey company has pleaded guilty to racketeering charges and has promised to stop trying to do business in Ohio. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze reports that it’s one more big blow to the dwindling hopes of internet cafes throughout the state.

LISTEN: First the referendum failure, now the guilty pleas

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (2:07)


For years, internet cafes and sweepstakes parlors insisted they weren’t gambling fronts. But Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, Cuyahoga County law enforcement officials and even an appeals court disagreed. And a half-dozen of the cafes were raided in April. The hardware and software at many of those cafes were supplied by VS2 Worldwide Communications and P&E Technologies.

Now those two companies and three men associated with them have pleaded guilty to charges of attempted racketeering, gambling and possessing criminal tools.

Joe Frolik of the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office says the companies also agreed to leave Ohio.

“What they did say in court is that they believe what they were doing was legal but that, with the failure of the ability to get a referendum on the ballot they would have left Ohio anyway, so that this was just basically a business decision to cut their losses. We always believed that the law was on our side, that this was a criminal enterprise, this was illegal gambling that they were facilitating.”

A tough year
The referendum Frolik is referring to is the failed attempt to get an issue on the November 2014 ballot that would have overturned a new state law that forbids the cafes from paying out any cash—period – and prizes must be worth less than $10.

Dan Tierney, a spokesman for the attorney general office, says it was important to pursue the criminal case even under the old law because there’s always someone looking for a new way to run a gambling business.

“We see new types of games every so often that they’ll put a computer out there and say, ‘Well it’s not a slot machine, it’s this.’ And our job as law enforcement individuals is to make sure those claims are true. And if they’re not and if they’re violating the gambling laws of the state of Ohio, we’ll have investigations and prosecutions such as the one we saw with VS2."

VS2 could not be reached for comment. About a dozen other smaller cases connected with the internet cafes raided in April are pending and have hearings scheduled in Cleveland next week.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Ohio's tax commissioner says the ID quiz is going well
I filed electronically and there was no provision to print out a copy that I could find. How do I get a copy sent to my exclusive address of record, including ...

Ohio to appeal ruling keeping Akron's red light cameras in place
I don't understand what all the fuss is about. If you don't like tickets drive the speed limit and stop at red lights. It's really all up to you.

Who's on public assistance in Ohio?
legalize marijuana get over it,,, its here its been the main drug test scare of a lifetime. u got people that get drunk every night and work u got peoples on ...

Letters from a lost friend: A Beachwood survivor's Holocaust remembrance
What a great story -- and how important it was for both Marlene and her mother to tell it! Thank you.

Ohio lawmaker calls for an East Cleveland bailout
Instead of blaming Kasich and the Republicans for all of East Cleveland's fiscal woes, take a look at the facts. Some political entities in Ohio are too small ...

Legalized marijuana is a boon for a Cleveland-area grow light maker
Shouldn't he be in jail for paraphernalia? He knows he is selling for marijuana production.

Akron city council to vote on resolution for hiring ex-offenders
Great as a taxpayer I paid for the police to catch them, the free lawyer, the jail to house them , the food their kids eat the medical for them and all its goin...

5 of 8 rule headed for a vote
this is just another way for kasich to pass the buck and claim that it gives the local districts control. Few schools have enough money because of his cuts. T...

A passionate debate about parole in Ohio
I was heartened to hear that the legislators will consider ANY legislation to break the chains the parole board has put on these old law offenders who have serv...

Bill would allow Ohio religious leaders to refuse to do gay marriages
This is just a lot of political posturing. The free exercise clause of the 1st Amendment already protects clergy from being forced by civil authorities to perfo...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University