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Another Casino Boat Venture in Tarpon, Florida

28 October 2003

TARPON SPRINGS, Florida -- As reported by the St. Petersburg Times: "In the sink-or-swim world of cruises to nowhere, casino boat ventures in this city have often barely tread water.

"First, the city torpedoed a proposal to bring a casino boat, hotel and convention center to N Pinellas Avenue last summer.

"Next, gambling business in the area tanked when a Stardancer Casino Cruise ship was repossessed, disappearing from its Sponge Docks berth after the ship's owners ran into financial trouble.

"Then, in January, FBI agents raided several Stardancer Casino boats, including one in Tarpon Springs, seizing evidence in an embezzlement investigation.

"...None of that history bothers Charles Liberis. The prominent Pensacola lawyer is confident his new Tarpon Springs casino boat venture will stay afloat when it starts up before the year's end.

"...If his proposed boat meets city requirements, which Tarpon Springs officials say is likely, Liberis could end up shuttling passengers out to the only offshore gambling boat between Port Richey and John's Pass.

"...The vessel will be parked in international waters several miles away from a dock sureBet is leasing from Louis Pappas' Riverside Restaurant on Dodecanese Boulevard, Liberis said.

"...Passengers will pay an as-yet-to-be-determined fee to chunk quarters into the casino boat's roughly 300 slot machines. The 202-foot-long vessel will accommodate up to 600 passengers, has a restaurant and 20 gaming tables. It also will feature live entertainment, Liberis said..."

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