TALLAHASSEE, Florida (AP) -Florida Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll announced her resignationWednesday, a day after she was questioned by authorities investigatingan Internet cafe company that she once represented.
Carroll's resignation letter to Gov. Rick Scott, dated Tuesday,offered no details about her reason for leaving. But Scott's chief ofstaff, Adam Hollingsworth, said she was interviewed by FloridaDepartment of Law Enforcement officers Tuesday regarding her work withAllied Veterans of the World.
She resigned to ensure her ties tothe company would not be a distraction for the administration, he said.Carroll, a Navy veteran, had owned a public relations firm thatrepresented that company.
While serving as a state lawmaker,Carroll's ties to the company were also questioned when she proposed abill that would benefit Internet cafes.
Carroll's aides said they had no immediate comment Wednesday.
Theowner of Allied Veterans was arrested Tuesday in Oklahoma on charges ofracketeering. He is accused of making $290 million after supplyingillegal gambling software in Florida and claiming the games' proceedswould benefit a veterans group. Oklahoma authorities say the groupactually received only 1% of the money. Chase Egan Burns, 37, and hiswife, 38-year-old Kristin Burns, both face extradition to Florida toface the charges.
Chase Burns owns International Internet Technologies in Anadarko, about 60 miles southwest of Oklahoma City.
Heand his wife were arrested after an investigation that spanned severalyears and involved the Internal Revenue Service and various lawenforcement agencies in Oklahoma and Florida, including the sheriff'soffice in Florida's Seminole County, Oklahoma Attorney General ScottPruitt's office.
Chase Burns was released from the Caddo County jail Tuesday afternoon on a $500,000 bond. He denied any wrongdoing.
"What we do is legal," he told The Oklahoman on Monday, the night before he turned himself in to local authorities.
His father, Tony Burns, also serves as his attorney. Tony Burns told the newspaper that his son broke no laws.
"WhatChase was doing was he was actually selling the Internet time," TonyBurns said. "That's was what his business was - providing the software.And there's nothing illegal about providing software to any business."
Tony Burns did not return a call seeking comment from The Associated Press.
Atelephone number listed for Allied Veterans in St. Augustine has beendisconnected. Multiple emails sent by The Associated Press to an addresslisted on the group's website weren't returned Tuesday evening.
Theformer lieutenant governor - who is the mother of Miami Dolphinsdefensive back Nolan Carroll - has been named in previous scandals.
Lastyear, a former aide, Carletha Cole, claimed to have found Carroll in acompromising position with a travel aide inside's Carroll's office.
Coleis charged with violating state law for allegedly giving a recording ofa conversation with Carroll's chief of staff to a newspaper reporter.
Colesays she was ordered by Ramos to find adjoining hotel rooms for Carrolland Ramos when they traveled. Carroll has said previously theallegations are an attempt by Cole and her attorney to get the criminalcharges against Cole dropped.
Carroll, a married mother of three,became the brunt of late-night talk show hosts when she defended herselfagainst the allegations, telling 10 News that blackwomen who look like her "don't engage in relationships like that." Shelater apologized for the remarks, which implied that black lesbians are not attractive.
According to Florida's law regarding the line of succession, if there is no Lt. Governor in place, then Attorney General Pam Bondi is next in line, followed by CFO Jeff Atwater, and then Agricultural Commissioner Adam Putnam.
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Lawyers admonished:Lawyers admonised over case with former Jennifer Carroll aide Carletha Cole