Ohio Governor Signs Internet Cafe Crackdown

COLUMBUS — Ohio Gov. John Kasich has signed into law an effective ban on storefront sweepstakes parlors that legislators had become convinced were harboring illegal gambling operations.

The Republican governor had earlier signed an immediate moratorium on opening new Internet cafes effective until the law signed Tuesday takes effect.

More than 620 Internet cafes are in operation across the state, representing growing competition to legalized casinos and games held for charity.

Lawmakers moved to ban Internet cafes despite hours of testimony by owners and employees who said the operations were legal and workers’ livelihoods would be ruined.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine pushed lawmakers to fix the previous law, which he and other law enforcers said was costly and cumbersome to enforce.

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