Attorneys in Allied Veterans gaming case back in Seminole Co. Court

Updated:

Loading

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - An investigation into strip mall casinos led to 57 arrests over the past few days. That case was back in court Thursday.

More than a dozen lawyers went before a Seminole County judge Thursday arguing that the county doesn't have the standing to seize the assets of some 260 bank accounts in connection with the Allied Veterans video gaming case.

It's the scandal that forced Florida's lieutenant governor to resign.

At Thursday's civil hearing, the first question was simple matter of jurisdiction: Did the court in Seminole County have the standing to proceed in the case?

Lawyers argued that the properties in question, the accounts and physical assets including slot machines, were outside the county and therefore the case was filed incorrectly.

On that issue, the judge ruled in favor of the state, saying there was standing.

The judge did suggest that the vast majority of the cases will not be handled in Seminole County because the cases are from all across the state. For now the case will stay in Seminole County.

"You've never seen anything like this and you've heard us make some very strong arguments initially, and they're going to continue," said defense attorney Mark NeJame.

Defense attorneys admit that this is an unprecedented case, both in scope and sheer number of defendants.

Two more of the suspects in the Allied Veterans case went before a judge Thursday for a bond hearing and were still in custody Thursday evening.

Last week, several of the other people arrested in connection with the alleged illegal gaming operation bonded out of jail.