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.

NOCHE

Levin Furniture

Knight Foundation


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

ResponsibleOhio leader says the state is trying to set Issue 3 up for failure
Ohio suppose to believe that a group of investors were united under one cause to legalize marijuana.Once legal they all of sudden turn into 10 different compani...

Terry Pluto: U of A's new athletic director has the toughest job in town
It is a hard sell. The Students do not want to go to the football games and they do not want to pay for the program. They have a lot of student loan debt and t...

Akron considering the future of the B.F. Goodrich smokestacks
This BFGoodrich alumna says, "Thank you, Dave Lieberth!"

State creates panel to look at Ohio charter school sponsors
It is more than disturbing that charter schools, which seemed like a good idea years ago, have begun to cripple public school education.

DEVO mural in Akron is now on display downtown
The installation is not at the former site of Chili Dog Mac. CDM was one block north on the other side of Main St.

New report shows growth in white collar jobs for Northeast Ohio
Unfortunately, there are fewer jobs in comparison to the number of professionals applying for them. I have been had a full time job since June 2012. In order to...

Advocacy group: Ohio could lead in clean energy
Ohio Legislators, You are supposed to be our leaders but you're not taking us where we want to go - where we need to go!

Campaign for and against marijuana legalization begins
Cannabis legalization needs to happen as soon as possible! But not if it gives monopolies to a selected few to grow and sell the herb. Responsible Ohio's mono...

Heinen's in downtown Cleveland sponsors a contest for food entrepreneurs
Love that this took place right here! What a way to support local. Thank you Heinens! Love this quote, as a small local biz, I agree, it's big!! "To be a small...

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