Judge denies motion to dismiss gaming charges


Greg Muse faces charges of manufacturing or selling slot machines in Havelock. He said the machines are games of skill, and thus are not illegal under state law. A judge denied a defense motion to dismiss the charges, setting the stage for a trial next week.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Tuesday, April 15, 2014 at 04:54 PM.

A judge has denied a motion to dismiss charges brought by Havelock police against Greg Muse for manufacturing or selling slot machines, setting the stage for the case to go to trial.

“That’s fine with me,” Muse said. “I would really like the case to move on. I’d like to have the machines shown in evidence to where they are skill machines.”

Muse, 52, of New Bern, faces 15 counts of manufacturing or selling slot machines and one count of possessing a slot machine. Muse is the owner of Craven Music Company.

Muse’s defense attorneys, Gary Clemmons and Marc Chesnutt, had asked for the charges to be dismissed on March 21, arguing entrapment by estoppel, a legal term meaning that a government official misrepresented a point of law. Judge Walter Mills heard a full day of testimony from defense and state witnesses before denying the defense motion this week.

Muse said the machines he has are not games of chance but require skill and dexterity, which he said means they don’t fall under state laws that prohibit slot machines and gaming machines.

“I want to proceed on and show the machines into evidence as being skill games,” Muse said. “I feel pretty confident that they are skill games and operate as skill games.

“They’ve been evaluated by gaming companies and labeled as skilled. It requires skill to play them and requires player participation. … It’s just a completely new product. Why some of our government officials chose not to understand that I don’t know why.”

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