Undercover investigation leads to game room raid

HOUSTON - An undercover sting led to the arrests of several people on charges of illegal gambling on Saturday.

"We raided with a search warrant, went in and about 30 people were illegally gambling," said Harris County constable Alan Rosen. "Had somebody in with a gun posing as security guard, so this is a fluid situation and we are going to conduct an investigation now."

After weeks of undercover work, Precinct 1 deputies found the game room was operating illegal machines and illegal payouts.

"When you go into these establishments, you put money in and you are supposed to get prizes and TVs and stuff, but when you actually win, they have somebody that comes over and pays you cash money for your winnings," said Rosen.

Undercover deputies arrested four people and seized about 170 machines.

"We are going to seize the gaming machines themselves, the mother boards, and actually take anything that was used in the illegal gaming operation," said Rosen.

Rosen said they are cracking down on these illegal gaming operations because they breed other criminal activity.

"There is other criminal elements that happen. People are walking in and out of these establishments with money, so the people committing robberies and thefts all come to these facilities because they know the people coming in and out may have a large sum of money on them," said Rosen.

The four employees who were detained may face illegal gambling charges. In some cases, the game rooms can be legal, as long as the payouts are less than $5.

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