Court tosses another protection against sweepstakes machines

October 15, 2019 - 12:50 pm

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina appeals court has overturned another lower-court decision that prevented law enforcement officers from shutting down certain kinds of video sweepstakes machines through which patrons who buy gift cards can win prizes.

A three-judge panel on Tuesday threw out a 2017 permanent injunction which declared sweepstakes prohibitions didn't apply to the Gift Surplus kiosk machines marketed by Sandhill Amusements.

The state Supreme Court overturned a similar 2015 injunction involving an earlier version of the kiosks. But changes were made to the machine games, leading to the second injunction from an Onslow County judge.

Court of Appeals Judge Hunter Murphy wrote that the machines still violate the ban because the sweepstakes are conducted through "an entertaining display" in the form of video games that look like slot machines.

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