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Florida's lieutenant governor quits because of gambling inquiry involving Oklahoma software owner

Florida's lieutenant governor has resigned amid an investigation into a $300 million illegal gambling operation with Oklahoma ties.
by Nolan Clay Modified: March 14, 2013 at 12:36 am •  Published: March 13, 2013
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Florida's lieutenant governor has resigned because of her ties to a group accused of running a $300 million illegal gambling operation with software from an Oklahoma company.

Florida Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, a Republican, has not been charged. She resigned after being questioned Tuesday by investigators.

The president of the Oklahoma company, International Internet Technologies, is facing felony charges in Florida of racketeering; conspiracy; manufacture, sale or possession of slot machines; lottery; keeping a gambling house; and money laundering.

Florida authorities Wednesday described IIT president Chase Egan Burns, 37, as one of the four main co-conspirators behind the operation. Authorities said his company provided the software used at the illegal Internet casinos in Florida.

Federal and state agents seized evidence Tuesday from his business in Anadarko, and Burns was jailed for a few hours in Anadarko on Tuesday before being released on a $500,000 bond. He is fighting extradition to Florida. Authorities said he lives in Fort Cobb.

“What we do is legal,” he told The Oklahoman on Monday night.

“The organization falsely claimed to be a charitable veterans' organization, but instead deceived the public and government while lining the pockets of its operators,” the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said.

The group, called Allied Veterans of the World, was led by Burns; Johnny Duncan, 62, of Boiling Springs, S.C.; Jerry Bass, 62, of Jacksonville, Fla.; and attorney Kelly Mathis, 49, of Jacksonville, Fla., authorities said.

“Investigators believe the four co-conspirators received a combined more than $90 million in proceeds from the scheme,” the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said.

Officials said 53 other people were involved in the operation and also will face charges, including Burns' wife, Kristin Amanda Burns, 38. Most already have been arrested.

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by Nolan Clay
Sr. Reporter
Nolan Clay was born in Oklahoma and has worked as a reporter for The Oklahoman since 1985. He covered the Oklahoma City bombing trials and witnessed bomber Tim McVeigh's execution. His investigative reports have brought down public officials,...
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