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Court asks why it shouldn’t dismiss ‘pre-reveal’ appeal

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An appellate court was on the verge of rejecting an appeal of a lower court’s decision that entertainment devices known as “pre-reveal” games are in fact illegal slot machines. Dockets at the 1st District Court of Appeal show that Gator Coin II—the Jacksonville company that distributes the games—was ordered to show “why this appeal should not be dismissed” because its filings weren’t in order. An attorney for the company, Bryan E. DeMaggio, responded in a 21-page court filing—including exhibits—that lawyers “inadvertently neglected”…

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Judge files order after ruling ‘pre-reveal’ games are illegal slots

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As expected, a Tallahassee judge has entered a written order following his decision last month that he had gotten it “wrong the first time” and said games known as “pre-reveal” are in fact illegal slot machines. Circuit Judge John Cooper this week filed a “final declaratory judgment,” which allows Gator Coin II—the Jacksonville company that distributes the games—to now appeal to the 1st District Court of Appeal.

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Judge reverses himself, decides ‘pre-reveal’ machines are slots

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In a stunning reversal, a Tallahassee judge on Monday decided he had gotten it “wrong the first time around” and said games known as “pre-reveal” are in fact illegal slot machines.  Circuit Judge John Cooper, however, was quick to say his change of mind was not influenced by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, but rather by further argument on how pre-reveal, or “no chance,” games actually play. The Tribe’s lawyer had said that allowing the machines, which look and play like…

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Lawyers to face off in hearing over ‘pre-reveal’ games

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Lawyers for the Seminole Tribe of Florida and companies behind what are known as “pre-reveal” games—a name they apparently disdain—will appear Monday afternoon in a Tallahassee courtroom. Circuit Judge John Cooper agreed to hear argument on why he should reconsider his previous ruling that the stand-alone consoles aren’t illegal slot machines. The devices in question use a specific software known as “Version 67.” The machines—offered mostly at bars and taverns—look and play like a slot machine, Cooper had reasoned, but don’t fit the legal definition of gambling because the…

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Pre-reveal game makers bemoan state’s ‘heavy-handed tactics’

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The companies behind what are known as “pre-reveal” games say they’re “losing money every day” even after a Tallahassee judge ruled the stand-alone consoles aren’t illegal slot machines. Gator Coin II and Blue Sky Games are asking Circuit Judge John Cooper to lift an automatic stay of his March decision. Cooper, however, already has agreed to reconsider the ruling, setting a hearing next Monday in the Leon County Courthouse. The devices—offered mostly at bars and taverns—look and play like a slot machine, Cooper had reasoned,…

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Gambling deal may come down to slots question

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Seeing it as the “lesser of various evils” to pass a gambling bill this year, the House may give in to the Senate’s position to legislatively approve new slot machines in counties that passed referendums allowing them, according to those familiar with the negotiations. As of early Monday, the Conference Committee on Gaming was set to meet later in the day at 1:30 p.m., though an official notice had not yet gone out. The House and Senate are far apart on their respective gambling…

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With ‘pre-reveal’ games, it’s déjà vu all over again

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Illegal gambling is like cockroaches: You kill one and there are dozens more when it came from. Back in 2013, a multi-state illegal gambling investigation embarrassed the Legislature, resulted in dozens of arrests and eventually took down a lieutenant governor. Jennifer Carroll stepped down because, before her election, she provided public-relations representation to the company being investigated. Yup, she was never charged with a crime and yet just the past association cost her the job. Some weeks later, lawmakers outlawed the strip-mall…

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