Prosecutors wrapping up charity scandal

ORLANDO, Fla. - After starting with 57 arrests for running a string of Internet casinos, prosecutors are left with 17 defendants charged with operating Allied Veterans of the World.

Five more defendants entered pleas Tuesday in Seminole County court.

Michael Davis, the group's secretary, Gary Davis, James Hill, Charles Bartlett and Sam Keeble all pleaded no contest to misdemeanor charges of running an illegal lottery.

Charges against Linda Davis were dropped.

Prosecutor Nick Cox says the case is wrapping up.

The Jacksonville lawyer charged with setting up the $300 million operation was found guilty of racketeering and gambling charges in October. The only person in the case to face jail time, 50-year-old Kelly Mathis could be sentenced to hundreds of years behind bars and the ruination of his law practice.

Other members of the group, including those who hired Mathis, pleaded no contest to lesser charges that do not include jail time. Mathis was targeted as the mastermind because he helped investors skirt a nebulous state law that appeared to allow the Internet casinos.

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