This Penal Code Section is basically making it illegal to have any sort of a lottery operation going on. Obviously, the government's location like the California lottery is going to have full jurisdiction when it comes to money like this.
These guys make thousands of dollars every day on lottery tickets and the lottery, so they're not going to let anybody move in on their business. Basically, the law says every person that lets or permits to be used any building or vessel or any portion hereof knowing that it is to be used for setting up, managing, drawing any lottery, or for the purpose of selling or disposing lottery tickets is going to be guilty of a misdemeanor if they are not authorized to do so.
The government is like the Mafia. This is them saying, listen this is how we make money. We're not going to let anybody else be able to make money when it comes to these lottery tickets.
I've had cases where people have actually stolen lottery tickets at gas stations. The gas station attendant basically tricking the customer telling them that their lottery ticket didn't win, and then the lottery finding out about it and then they have a task force that will prosecute them for it.
They also are constantly sending people into stores and gas stations, trying to make sure that the lottery is being dealt with properly, but the bottom line on this Penal Code Section 326 is that you cannot go into the lottery business for yourself.
You obviously can do it if you're authorized to do it like these stores that are selling lottery tickets because they're all set up and they know how to do it and they know how to do it the right way and these guys are monitored by the California lottery.
Are There Defenses To The Lottery Concept?
Of course, there are defenses to Penal Code Section 326 – basically renting out a premise for lottery purpose, but it's going to have to do with the facts of the case.
In other words, there are certain rules for setting things up and getting authorization from the government. As long as the government is getting a piece of their action, you are authorized to be able to do this and you're not just doing this yourself and taking a cut of the money without the authorization and knowledge of the California lottery, then you're going to be fine, but once you start doing things yourself, making money, and the government is not getting their piece, you're taking lottery money away from the California lottery, then they're going to charge you with this Penal Code Section 326 violation.
It's typically going to be charged as a misdemeanor. You're probably looking at up to a year in the county jail. So, if you have one of these offenses or something similar to this involving the California lottery or a violation of Penal Code Section 326, I suggest we sit down, we talk, we go over everything and really get a strategy together because there are defenses to these cases.
Consult with an Experienced Defense Lawyer
Sometimes people aren't trying to cheat the government out of money and sometimes they are. If the government can prove by convincing evidence and prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury that you're trying to cheat the government and you're renting a location – whether it's a boat or house or building for purposes of making money related to the California lottery, you need an attorney immediately because they're going to try to put you in jail.
They're going to try to punish you and restrict you and if they lost any money, they're going to try to get all the money back and put a judgment against you. You'll be ordered by the criminal judge one, of these lottery Penal Code Sect 326 violations to pay all the money back and if you don't have the money to pay it, they're going to take it out of your hide; they're going to put you in jail and they're still going to order you to pay it and you'll have that restitution order sitting on you for the three years that they put you on probation, and if you don't put it off within that three year period, then you'll be in a position where they'll get a civil judgment against you that will follow you around for the rest of your life.
So, if you're charged with a Penal Code Section 326 violation and it's claimed that you're running a location or an operation that is selling unauthorized lottery tickets, come and sit down with me in the privacy of my office. We're going to discuss whether this is a case that can be defended, or whether this is going to be a case that we need to do damage control and work out some sort of a plea bargain with the prosecutors and try to get a lesser charge for you and get this off your record as soon as possible.
For more information on Renting Premises For Lottery Purposes, a free initial consultation is your best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (213) 542-0979 today.