"Their premise of charity is a lie -- a lie to our citizens and a lie to our veterans."
Owners of dozens of Internet gambling centers in Florida were arrested Wednesday as part of a three-year investigation into Jacksonville-based Allied Veterans of the World, a purported charity group that authorities say collected millions of dollars for itself and little money for veterans.
The probe led to the arrest of 55 individuals in Florida and five other states and prompted the resignation of Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll. It is the "first wave" of Operation Reveal the Deal, which targets illicit slot machine operators who exploited a loophole in the state's sweepstakes laws, said Gerald Bailey, commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement at a news conference in Orlando.
Targeted in the crackdown were owners and operators of 49 gambling centers affiliated with Allied Veterans of the World, an organization registered as a charity, but which gave only 2 percent of its profits over three years to charitable causes. Carroll's consulting company had represented Allied Veterans until she became lieutenant governor in 2011. Police would not say if Carroll received payments from the group while serving as lieutenant governor.
Read more at the Times/Herald.