Who’s stealing the cash and equipment from that bingo hall? Could it be the AG?!?
Bingo halls are often the victims of theft. In Leeds, career criminals were caught in the act of breaking into Mecca Bingo. A continent away, in Niagara Falls, one suspect was
arrested and two more are being sought after a robbery at Delta Bingo.
In Alabama, another type of seizure has recently occurred: Attorney General Luther Strange ordered a raid on the Center Stage casino, netting $283,657 and 691 electronic devices. Center Stage says they are electronic bingo machines, which are legal.
The AG has determined that the equipment taken constitutes illegal gambling machines. Along with the seized cash and computers, the AG has also removed many of the 100 jobs that had previously provided an income in an area of high unemployment.
Bingo in the UK
UK Bingo halls are exceedingly popular. Bingo itself is entertaining; and the social element of joining friends and family for an enjoyable evening at the bingo boards regularly draws in multitudes of happy players. It follows then, that money received from all of those gamers turns the bingo hall into a magnet for thieves.
Mecca Bingo in Leeds is successful. To deter thefts, Mecca Bingo installed an alarm system. It worked. In the early morning hours of April 12, two career criminals tripped the alarm when they attempted to break into the establish. Police were immediately summoned and caught the pair wearing gloves and holding screwdrivers and crowbars. Spotted close by was a trolley jack, able to lift a couple of tons. These crooks came prepared.
The two burglars, Stephen Littler and Shaun Murphy, each have long offense records. They specialize in commercial theft. Littler has focused on gaming equipment in his prior professional actions. Murphy has been in court on 38 occasions, charged with 178 criminal counts.
In this particular matter, attempted burglary was the guilty plea of both defendants. Along with a prison sentence of over two years for each, Murphy received the added indignation and pain of being bitten by a police dog when he attempted to run from the scene of the crime.
Bingo in Canada
Around midnight on July 27, the Niagara Falls Delta Bingo was robbed. The thieves grabbed bingo hall staff and made a demand for money. The employees were terrified. One 17-year-old is being held in custody, and police continue a search for two additional suspects.
Bingo in the State of Alabama
A state of turmoil exists in Alabama as to what constitutes electronic bingo machines, as opposed to illegal gambling devices. After the raid on the Center Stage casino, Gov. Robert Bentley was interviewed. His take on the entire situation is that the courts can determine legal from illegal, and citizens should have a vote on whether or not to allow bingo machines in the state.
Governor Bentley is on a Road to Economic Recovery Tour. Bingo is not on his radar screen. It’s refreshing to listen to an Alabama official who is not out to destroy the state gaming industry.