First on 9: Greenville to shut down all sweepstakes cafes - WNCN: News, Weather

First on 9: Greenville to shut down all sweepstakes cafes

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GREENVILLE, N.C. - Sweepstakes cafes in Greenville will have a month and ten days to close up shop or be shut down. According to letters hand delivered and mailed to all of Greenville’s sweepstakes owners, all 10 businesses are currently operating in violation of state law.

In December 2012, the North Carolina Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the statute that makes it a criminal offense to conduct electronic video games.

Chief Hassan Aden has given them a timeline to shut down. Any owners, operator, manager or employee can be charged. The first offense is a Class I misdemeanor and the second is a Class H felony.

Related Article: Sweepstakes, illegal or not?

In January, the county took action against “Pot of Gold” machines. This enforcement is different in that they are going after internet machines utilizing pre-reveal software.

Law enforcement hadn’t cracked down on these yet because District Attorney Kimberly Robb said she didn’t have clear legal authority to prosecute these cases.

Today (Thursday) Robb declined to comment about the change in policy.

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