Judge allows gambling task force to resume

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 20, 2010

TUSKEGEE. (AP) — A judge allowed the Governor’s Task Force on Illegal Gambling to resume investigations Friday in every Alabama county except Macon, where the state’s largest electronic bingo casino operates.

Macon County Circuit Judge Tom Young had restrained the task force on March 5 from operating in every Alabama county except Mobile, where task force commander John Tyson serves as district attorney.

Young revised his order during a court hearing Friday. “It was never intended to restrict anything other than Macon County,” he said.

Tyson said that ends a two-week hiatus for the task force. He would not say what the task force’s next step would be, but at one point during the hearing Friday, Tyson told the judge, “I intend to go to Greene County, your honor.”

Greene County is home to Greenetrack, one of a handful of electronic bingo casinos still operating in the state. Tyson argues that the electronic bingo machines there and at other locations are illegal slot machines, but some Greene County officials have vowed to block any raid conducted without a search warrant.

Victoryland, with more than 6,000 machines, is the state’s largest casino and the largest taxpayer in rural Macon County.