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Associated Press, Published June 29 2009

Former gaming worker says he can’t be sued

A man who gave authorities information in the investigation of an illegal gambling case says he’s protected from a lawsuit by the state’s whistle-blower law.

Susan Bala, the former owner of a Fargo simulcast betting company, is suing Michael Cichy and four others, including top state and federal prosecutors, alleging they violated her constitutional rights. Bala was convicted in 2005 on federal charges of illegal gambling. An appeals court overturned the verdict.

Cichy worked with Bala at Racing Services Inc., and tipped off investigators about what he believed was an illegal gambling site.

Cichy says North Dakota’s whistle-blower law gives people the right to report any suspected violations of federal, state or local laws. He says he was not responsible for Bala’s arrest and has no liability in the case. The other defendants also are seeking to dismiss her lawsuit.

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