UPDATE: Attorney says Dublin commissioner not charged in sweepstakes bust
BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The attorney for a Bladen County town commissioner says her client was not charged in a sweepstakes parlor bust in Sampson County this past week.
Cynthia Adams Singletary says Dublin Commissioner Jeffrey Scott Smith, 45, saw news reports that he faced charges after deputies and North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement (ALE) searched four businesses they said in a news release were operating illegal sweepstakes machines. But she says when Smith went to Sampson County to answer to the charged, investigators there could not find any records that he needed to be charges. Singletary also said Smith has no business holdings in Sampson County.
According to the news release sent to WWAY from the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office Friday, deputies and officers from ALE seized 200 machines and cash from the four businesses. A fifth business was also searched by the ALE that is licensed by the NC Education Lottery. Violations were also filed at that business.
According to the release, the businesses involved were Clinton Overstock in Clinton, Roseboro Overstock and JMJ Coin Laundry in Roseboro and Top Catz and Lucky Stop in Autryville. The release said Clinton Overstock owners Smith and Wanda Faye Milligan, along with employee Randall Malpass were charged; Roseboro Overstock owners James Donald Clark and Sandra Allcot Clark were charged; JMJ Coin Laundry owner Tommy Nguyen was charged; Top Catz manager Nicholas Maurice Maness was charged; and finally, Lucky Stop employee Sultan Albadani was charged.
Capt. Eric Pope of the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office, who sent the news release to WWAY, told us Saturday the release had been prepared by ALE. An ALE spokesperson could not immediately be reached for comment Saturday.
Smith has been implicated in similar incidents in the past. He was arrested in May after a bust of three sweepstakes businesses in Bladen County. Singletary says Smith also went to trial on similar charges last year in Bladen County, but that the case ended with a hung jury and has not been retried.
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