Biggest Electronic Bingo Casino in Alabama Closes Down

Thu, 12 Aug 2010 06:28
The biggest Alabama electronic bingo operation closed on Monday, as its owner tries to avoid any raid by the anti-gambling task force headed by John Tyson. The casino Victoryland is owned by Milton McGregor who was waiting for a court ruling that would trigger the start of more raids in the future for the casino institutions of the state. Victoryland is among the remaining non-Indian casinos. Owner McGregor claims that the raids where done for publicity purposes. According to McGregor, "It is apparent from Tyson and Riley’s latest legal shenanigans and threats that they will stop at nothing to put on a show and attempt to raid Victoryland to garner one last bit of publicity before Czar Riley leaves office and the task force is disbanded.” There were protests on the past raids, but Governor Riley and task force commander Tyson maintained that the casino is clearly an illegal slot machine operation. Tyson commented that the law is "crystal clear, pointing out that the reason McGregor closed down his electronic bingo operation is because he already knew what the ruling would be. Victoryland's electronic bingo operation For their part, McGregor maintains that the electronic bingo machines are only a different version of the completely legal paper bingo. Prior to its closing down, these electronic bingo machines were the biggest success of Victoryland, grossing up to $503 million in just five years. These games were originally made to benefit charity, but a look in the finances showed that only $4.4 million reached charity. However, the total income of the slot machines after deducting operation expenses was not released. With most casinos' closing down, the players of electronic bingo have shifted to Indian casinos since these are not under state regulations. Being under federal regulations, these casinos continue to offer electronic bingo with the number of players significantly increasing overtime. With the Victoryland casino closing down, about 600 workers have been left idle. The casino is actually one of the largest taxpayers in the rural area and it is considered to be the largest source of income for Macon County. The court ruling The court ruling is expected to come out a few days now. In the process, a federal lawsuit has only been put forward claiming that the Voting Rights Act has been violated. This is due to the fact that people of Macon County have already voted to allow bingo in the area. Victoryland’s attorney Mark White claims that what happens now would depend on the results of the lawsuit. With the raids being launched by Governor Riley who will be leaving office in January, the future of electronic bingo operation may also depend on the decision of the next person in office.

john-tyson casino-victoryland milton-mcgregor