Ozark man and His Son Arrested in Mobile Gambling Bust

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - About a half-dozen electronic gambling machines were smashed into pieces yesterday outside Mobile police headquarters as authorities announced charges against an Ozark man
and his son.

Police said 59-year-old Jerry Cordell of Ozark, and his son, 35-year-old Paul Cordell of Mobile, were arrested on misdemeanor gambling charges in a police undercover probe that netted 64 machines.

Police said the activity reaches into Georgia and Florida and could lead to federal prosecution.

The Cordells were released on bond following their arrest Tuesday.

Jerry Cordell's boss, Cheryl Henderson, Southeast regional manager for machine operator Ted's Music Co. in Los Angeles, said police had exaggerated their case.

However, an illegal cash payout to a player apparently triggered the police investigation.

Henderson says the firm only had 20 machines at locations, with the remaining 44 in storage.

She said the younger Cordell did not work for Ted's but was only helping his father who had an injury. She said the Cordells did not own the machines.

Promoted as games of skill, these games of chance were ruled illegal in a 2004 Alabama Supreme Court order.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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