Judge Kenneth Lester ruled Mathis must still face more than 100 charges of racketeering, possession of a slot machine and conducting a lottery.
The trial continues today, as Mathis' attorneys consider calling three former prosecution witnesses who made deals to avoid jail time but did not testify – Allied Veterans of the World Commander Jerry Bass, former commander Johnny Duncan and Chase Burns, who designed the software for the games.
"I think all three of them would have testified very favorably to me," Mathis said after Tuesday's hearing. "I think that's the implication because the state didn't call them."
Defense attorney Mitch Stone said Mathis simply acted as an attorney and helped the men follow the state law.
"This is a classic role of (being) a lawyer," said Stone, of Jacksonville. "The issue here is whether this activity constituted gambling versus a sweepstakes."
The group opened dozens of Internet cafes in which owners said customers bought Internet time and could play sweepstakes games for free. Several customers testified early in the trial that they thought they were gambling in the cafes and that they rarely used the Internet time.
Customers were required to sign a form that outlined they were buying Internet time and that they received free sweepstakes entries with that purchase.
"Mr. Mathis cannot be held responsible for what a future customer may think," Stone said. "He can only be held responsible for what the law requires."
The defense said the sweepstakes contests were similar to those in which a customer makes a purchase and might find a winning number on a soda cap.
Allied Veterans took in $300 million after payouts. Only $6 million was given to veterans, officials said, about the same amount Mathis received in legal fees.
Prosecutors called it "preposterous" to claim that Mathis was uninvolved in the illegal aspects of the operation.
"The issue is not whether it was gambling versus a sweepstakes," said state prosecutor Lisa Acharekar. "The evidence of the record is sufficient to convict the defendant of every single crime with which he is charged."
A Sanford judge dismissed 53 money laundering charges against Jacksonville attorney Kelly Mathis, who has been accused of masterminding an illegal Internet cafe network that portrayed itself as a veterans' charity.