Florida Accidentally Banned All Computers, Smart Phones In The State Through Internet Cafe Ban: Lawsuit

07/08/2013 11:59 am ET | Updated Jul 09, 2013

When Florida lawmakers recently voted to ban all Internet cafes, they worded the bill so poorly that they effectively outlawed every computer in the state, according to a recent lawsuit.

In April Florida Governor Rick Scott approved a ban on slot machines and Internet cafes after a charity tied to Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll was shut down on suspicion of being an Internet gambling front -- forcing Carroll, who had consulted with the charity, to resign.

Florida's 1,000 Internet cafes were shut down immediately, including Miami-Dade's Incredible Investments, LLC, a café that provides online services to migrant workers, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

The owner, Consuelo Zapata, is now suing the state after her legal team found that the ban was so hastily worded that it can be applied to any computer or device connected to the Internet, according to a copy of the complaint obtained by The Miami Herald.

And that broad wording can be applied to any number of devices, according to the Miami law firm of Kluger, Kaplan, Silverman, Katzen & Levine, who worked with constitutional law attorney and Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz.

The suit maintains that the ban was essentially passed "in a frenzy fueled by distorted judgment in the wake of a scandal that included the Lieutenant Governor’s resignation" and declares it unconstitutional.

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