Iowa prosecutors drop charges against Peninsula Gaming execs

May 16, 2011 9:29 AM

After months of denials and embarrassment, the top executives of Peninsula Gaming LLC, owner of an Iowa casino, have been cleared of accusations that they had violated campaign disclosure laws by contributing to the re-election campaign of former Iowa Gov. Chet Culver.

Martin Brent Stevens, company CEO, and COO Jonathan Swain, a former Las Vegas gaming executive, had been accused of making illegal campaign contributions to Culver’s 2010 campaign by donating money in another person’s name.

A special prosecutor asked the court to dismiss the charges, saying additional information was obtained indicating there was insufficient evidence to show the men violated the law.

The allegations became a major source of difficulty when Peninsula Gaming filed for a license to build a $260 million gaming complex in Mulvane, Kansas, about 18 miles south of Wichita. Some conservative Republican lawmakers objected to the license approval because of the pending accusations in Iowa.

The "dismissal," said a Peninsula Gaming attorney, "vindicates the company and its officers and reinforces Peninsula Gaming’s reputation as a responsible and ethical company."