Commission: VFW Post in Belchertown operated gambling machines not authorized by state law

For the Gazette
Published: 5/31/2017 11:23:19 PM

BELCHERTOWN — The state Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission ruled last month that the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8428 violated its operating license by operating two gambling machines against state law at its Pelham Road club.

The commission suspended the VFW’s pouring license for five days but agreed not to enforce the suspension if no future violations occur in the next two years.

According to the decision, the VFW post has operated without violation for 48 years.

Vernon Wheeler, the post’s quartermaster who is cited in the report explaining how the games worked, declined to comment on the decision Wednesday.

Investigators from ABCC visiting the VFW in February found two electronic games, Massachusetts Skill Touch and Diamond Skilled Games Gold, according to the decision.

Each contained money — $1,340 and $685, respectively. An additional $103 was found behind the bar, where winners claimed their earnings, the ABCC found.

The game supplier, B&S Entertainment Inc., told investigators its split the money with the VFW.

Massachusetts law for licensed facilities prohibits gambling except for games authorized by the Legislature or local licensing authorities.


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