orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

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March 22, 2013

APNewsBreak: Fla. to probe 2nd sweepstakes chain

(Continued)

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. —

More photos posted on the charity's website include Dukes handing a $10,000 charity check to his local sheriff "for safety of the children and families in Berkeley County" and accepting a framed resolution passed by the South Carolina House of Representatives in 2010 to honor his charitable works.

The brochure describes Dukes as living on a farm outside Charleston, S.C. Records show he also is the owner of Music In Motion Family Fun Center of Summerville, S.C., which offers "jackpot bingo" seven nights a week. Dukes is also listed as the managing partner of Goldmine Arcade, a Florida corporation affiliated with several sweepstakes cafes.

Dukes' wife answered the door at the couple's modest home near Ravenel, S.C., on Wednesday, but said her husband wasn't home. He did not return a message seeking comment about his involvement with Children's Cancer Cooperative.

Dukes is paid $50,000 annually as president of the cancer charity, federal tax records show. His son, Carl Dukes, is the vice president, and other members of his family and business associates have also received money.

Children's Cancer Cooperative reported to the IRS giving away more than $2.5 million between 2009 and 2011. The organization's 2012 return is not yet available, but the charity's web site says it donated another $338,000 last year.

During its initial 2011 investigation into Allied Veterans, records show officials at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services reviewed Internet casinos affiliated with Children's Cancer Cooperative after concerns were raised that customers were being told money spent on the games was being provided to charity. Windows at the cafes featured the Children's Cancer logo and large photos showing charity checks being presented to hospitals were prominently displayed inside.

Erin Gillespie, a spokeswoman for the agriculture department, said the agency ordered the cafes to remove the charity's logo and no longer represent that the funds spent there were going to help sick kids. A lobbyist for the cafes said they would comply, and the agency closed its investigation.

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