Florida’s Internet Café Casinos - The Best Online Casino Guide Blog
Recently Florida’s so-called “convenience casinos” have gotten a considerable amount of media attention. Even the New York Times wrote a story about the issue thanks to an event that occurred at a convenience casino in Apopka, a small town north of Orlando.
Convenience casinos are basically internet cafes where customers pay to play online casino games on computer terminals. There is no state law banning those cafes, though there are some local jurisdictions that outlaw them. Overall, almost 1,000 such businesses exist throughout the Sunshine State. Most of them are found in small, nondescript strip malls.
The issue has become a hot-button topic lately thanks to a robbery late last month at an Apopka Internet café casino. The business was robbed at gunpoint during business hours. In the ensuing commotion, one of the robbers was killed. A second has been arrested.
Some worry that the businesses result in an increase in crime. Since they have lots of cash on hand at all times and don’t have the same security as a bank or Vegas-style casino, they are enticing targets for armed robbers. There is also the question of legality. Though they are not specifically banned in most Florida jurisdictions, they operate in sort of a gray area. Casino gambling isn’t allowed, but the players are technically paying for time on the Internet, rather than wagering on the games themselves. Because of this separation between the games and the payments, they aren’t technically gambling businesses by the letter of the law. They are clearly in violation of the spirit of the law, though. In light of the recent Apopka robbery, some lawmakers want to pass legislation explicitly banning the businesses.