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November 21, 2014
For More Information, contact:
Luther Strange
Joy Patterson (334) 242-7491
Alabama Attorney General
Claire Haynes (334) 242-7351
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(MONTGOMERY) -Attorney General Luther Strange today announced a decisive
victory in an Alabama Supreme Court case involving so-called “electronic bingo.” In 2012,
law enforcement officers seized nearly 700 illegal slot machines and gambling devices,
$288,657.68 in cash proceeds, and records from the Center Stage casino in Houston
County, Alabama. The Alabama Supreme Court ruled today that the trial judge correctly
ordered the machines destroyed and the money and records forfeited to the State.

“Since taking office, I have said that I would resolve the debate over electronic
bingo in the courts,” said Attorney General Strange. “This ruling from the highest court
in our state once again confirms that so-called ‘electronic bingo’ is illegal under state
law. I will continue to enforce the law of Alabama, as set forth in our Constitution and
interpreted by the Alabama Supreme Court.”

The Alabama Supreme Court held that bingo, under Alabama law, involves
“meaningful human interaction” and cannot be “played within the circuitry of
electronic machinery.” The Court also held that this test applies to the “other local
bingo constitutional amendments in this State.” The Supreme Court explained that:

[T]he game traditionally known as bingo is not one played by or within an
electronic or computerized machine, terminal, or server, but is one played
outside of machines and electronic circuitry. It is a group activity, and one
that requires a meaningful measure of human interaction and skill. . . . In
accordance with the previously stated list of characteristics, each player
purchases and plays the game on one or more cards that . . . are not
electronic devices or electronic depictions of playing surfaces but are
actual physical cards made of cardboard, paper, or some other
functionally similar material that is flat and is preprinted with the grid
and the designations referenced above.

The Supreme Court also held that expert testimony was not necessary to
determine whether gambling devices play the game of bingo.

The case is Houston County Economic Development Authority v. State of Alabama, No. 1130388.

501 Washington Avenue * Montgomery, AL 36104 * (334) 242-7300