SLED to go after illegal video poker machines

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Complaints about illegal video poker machines are prompting a crackdown by South Carolina's top law enforcement agency.

The State newspaper of Columbia reports Tuesday that State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel is making the illegal machines a priority.

Keel plans to release details of the statewide initiative in about a month.

The Legislature decided to ban video poker in 2000 after a decade of debate. At the time, there were an estimated 29,000 machines scattered among thousands of sites.

Keel says the machines are showing up again at hundreds of sites, such as convenience stores.

The president of the state Association of Convenience Stores says the group supports the initiative. Kenneth Cosgrove says stores that have the illegal machines are taking business from honest retailers.

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