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Fla. charity probe to next focus on campaign money

Posted at 10:54 AM, Mar 14, 2013
and last updated 2014-02-11 16:12:19-05

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say the next phase of an investigation into a veterans charity accused of being a front for a $300 million gambling operation will focus on lobbying and campaign donations.

While authorities wouldn't talk specifics, records show the Florida-based charity Allied Veterans of the World and another company involved in the alleged fraud have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on lobbying in Florida. Nearly 60 people have been arrested in the probe so far and Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll stepped down after being questioned by investigators. She has not been charged with any wrongdoing.

Several of the defendants will make their first appearance Thursday in Seminole County Court.

Authorities say Allied Veterans ran nearly 50 Internet parlors with computerized slot machine-style games and gave little to veterans.