'White Hall' follows suit, closes doors

Posted by Cody Holyoke - bio | email

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Attorneys for White Hall Entertainment Center are locked in a stalemate.

The complex is closed while John Tyson and the governor's task force on illegal gambling battle it out against Victoryland before the Alabama Supreme Court.

"The task force has taken the position, 'We're going to take your property. We're going to close you down. We're going to put people out of work, and then we're going to find out if it's legal,'" exclaimed attorney Bobby Segall.

White hall representatives say the building is shut down for 'upgrades.'

The news comes a day after Victoryland made a similar claim.  Tuesday, owner Milton MacGregor clarified the situation, telling WSFA 12 News only 'point of sale' machines received updates--not electronic bingo equipment.

"It was my recommendation that White Hall not take that chance," Segall said.

White hall attorneys tell WSFA 12 News they've already upgraded equipment to meet the supreme court's standards of legal bingo.

In light of the closures, Governor riley fired back via statement.  It reads in part:

"These casinos claim they are doing nothing more than upgrading their computers. But given their track record of ignoring court orders, it's hard not to suspect that what's really happening behind closed doors is a wholesale destruction of evidence or the tampering of evidence."

Segall denies the claims.  He says White Hall is shutting down to avoid being raided a second time.

"We've already been through one raid--one we think was unlawful.  Another raid would be devastating," he explained.

White Hall Entertainment Center employs some 200 workers.  Attorneys for the complex say the facility has laid off all of them indefinitely.

©2010 WSFA. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.