Allied Veterans of the World attorney gets 6 years

Kelly Mathis was convicted of 103 counts in Internet cafe scandal

Published On: Feb 12 2014 11:33:05 AM EST   Updated On: Feb 12 2014 02:10:00 PM EST
SANFORD, Fla. -

An attorney convicted of leading a $300 million gambling ring that used a veterans charity as a front has been sentenced to 6 years in prison.

Jacksonville attorney Kelly Mathis received the sentence Wednesday after a Florida judge listened to character witnesses describe the lawyer as a man of integrity who loved his family.

Mathis' attorneys argued that he should be spared prison given he only provided legal advice to Allied Veterans of the World.

But statewide prosecutor Nick Cox said Mathis deserved prison for engaging in deception. Cox said Mathis was responsible for marrying the gambling operation with the veterans charity.

Mathis was convicted last year of 103 counts of racketeering, possessing slot machines and other charges after a trial that lasted four weeks.

He will remain free on bond pending appeals.

The arrest of Mathis and his co-defendants in March led to the resignation of Florida's lieutenant governor and a ban on so-called Internet cafes in Florida.