Many Internet cafe owners in Ohio flout state law, have financial troubles, investigation finds
A newspaper investigation of Ohio Internet cafes and their owners published Sunday has found most of the businesses provided incomplete information to the state and most of the operators identified had spotty financial backgrounds or criminal histories.
The Columbus Dispatch report comes as state lawmakers debate how to regulate the operations.
The newspaper found more than half the 780 businesses registered with Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine provided only a street address. Almost 100 aren’t on file with the Ohio Secretary of State.
Of 221 individual operators who registered, 122 couldn’t be identified for lack of identifying information. Six in 10 of those identified had spotty financial histories including tax liens and bankruptcies. A dozen had criminal backgrounds.
DeWine called it “the Wild, Wild West” and urged lawmakers to take control.