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By Greg Land |March 23, 2018 at 04:14 PM | Originally published on Daily Report Online Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided. Judge Gail Tusan, Fulton County Superior Court (Photo: John Disney/ALM) A Fulton County judge who oversaw two now-dismissed lawsuits against a lawyer for his work as a special prosecutor targeting illegal gambling on coin-operated machines, has declined to award the defendant attorney fees. The ruling by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Gail Tusan comes after the Georgia Court of Appeals reversed and remanded a nearly $50,000 award she granted to attorney Michael Lambros in one of the cases. Lambros had asked Tusan to award fees in both cases against the plaintiffs and their lawyers, Begner & Begner partner Alan Begner and Atlanta solo G. Brian Spears . The gaming machine owners—Redemption Alliance of Georgia Inc., Gaming Central and William Booth—first sued Lambros in 2014 for his work in several counties, which has garnered hundreds of thousands of dollars in forfeitures and settlements. They stem from arrangements Lambros had with the Clayton, Lanier, Emanuel and Toombs county district attorneys to pursue criminal and civil actions against merchants and gaming machine owners believed to be paying cash winnings to patrons in violation of the law. The suits argued, among other things, that the prosecutions were improper because Lambros’ compensation was based on his success at forfeiting cash and property, that he was improperly using Georgia racketeering law to pursue the cases and that the state’s conspiracy law is unconstitutional. Lambros asked the attorney general, the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council of Georgia and the individual district attorneys to provide a defense. All declined, so his Lambros Firm defended both suits. The first suit, Redemption I, named Lambros in his official capacity. Redemption II, which named him in his individual capacity, was dismissed six months after it was filed. Begner noted that Tusan cited sovereign immunity issues in her rulings in both cases and said the issues raised in the lawsuits were never litigated.
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