Attorneys criticize gambling arrest of their clients - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Attorneys criticize gambling arrest of their clients

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ALBANY, GA - (WALB) -

The state attorney General will appoint a special prosecutor to handle the cases against 14 prominent South Georgians arrested during that gambling raid Monday night.  

District Attorney Greg Edwards Wednesday afternoon recused himself from the case, saying he and members of his staff have personal dealings with the suspects.  Many of you continue to criticize the raid on a poker game between friends.Many South Georgians have told us, both personally and through social media, that the arrest of the 14 business leaders for gambling was just wrong.

 Attorney Jerry Brimberry said "I really think it's Mickey Mouse."
Among the men arrested, the former Albany Mayor, Dr. Willie Adams.  Wednesday Dr. Adams' attorney said he takes this criminal charge very seriously.
Attorney Chris Cohilas said "We don't obviously accept or agree that anything has been established.  That any crime has been committed, and we plan on holding the state to their burden of proof."
The 14 men, mostly business owners in their 60's and 70's, were arrested during a GBI raid on the old Riverhouse Restaurant on Jefferson Street Monday night.  Agents seized 2 guns and 20 thousand dollars in cash.  Several of the men told us this poker game has been going on for years, between friends.
Brimberry said "These people are producers, and I think they are not law breakers.  Anymore than somebody sitting out at Palmyra Nursing home playing gin rummy for a penny a point."
Dr. Adams attorney says the Mayor's reputation should not sullied by an arrest.
Cohilas said "Mayor Adams is a fantastic citizen.  He has been a gift to Dougherty County.  And it is my pleasure to represent him."
All the men are charged with misdemeanors, but the attorney's say the men should not just accept the charges.
Brimberry said "I would definitely plead not guilty and go to court on it."
The GBI said that gambling is a crime in Georgia, and they will enforce the law, even involving prominent citizens.

District Attorney Edwards said he had to call for a special prosecutor, because the staff of his office have several personal dealings with the 14 charged men, especially Dr. Adams.
Edwards said Dr. Adams , a pediatrician, had delivered several of his staff's children.

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