Illegal Gambling Facility in Phoenix Busted by Authorities

  • Shutdown follows an Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG) investigation that began in March
  • Searches at six locations yielded $7,000 in cash and a number of illegal gambling machines
  • Six people were detained and subsequently released pending charges
vintage illegal gambling table with cards and money
A joint operation by the Phoenix Police Department and the Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG) has resulted in an illegal gambling facility being shut down. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Undercover operation

An illegal gambling facility has been shut down by the Phoenix Police Department and the Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG).

An ADG investigation into the facility, which was was called “Tom’s Warehouse” or “Tom’s Amusement”, began back in March 2019.

This investigation subsequently led to an undercover operation being launched by the Phoenix Police Department and the ADG, resulting in undercover officers buying a firearm and illicit drugs at the establishment.

seven video poker machines, six ATM kiosks, eight sweepstakes computers, and $7,000 in cash was seized

As a result of this undercover operation, authorities secured enough evidence to obtain search warrants for six different locations across Arizona. Five of these locations were in Phoenix and the other was in Scottsdale, all with links to this illegal gambling operation.

As a result of these searches, seven video poker machines, six ATM kiosks, eight sweepstakes computers, and $7,000 in cash was seized.

Charges pending against alleged operators

Six people were detained and interviewed due to their alleged involvement in this illegal gambling operation. They were subsequently released and the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office filed pending charges.

Some of the charges that may be sought include the illegal control of a criminal enterprise, money laundering, promoting and benefiting from gambling, the sale of dangerous drugs, possession of drug paraphernalia, and the possession of gambling records and devices.

such operations attract other forms of criminal activity if they are not dealt with by authorities

Ted Vogt, director of the ADG, spoke about how the department was taking illegal gambling in Arizona very seriously, stating:

“We appreciate our ongoing partnerships with the Phoenix Police Department and the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office in our efforts to stop illegal gambling and its associated crimes.”

This investigation was part of a statewide crackdown. The ADG has said that these types of illegal gambling operations are usually always close to residential neighborhoods. They also believe that such operations attract other forms of criminal activity if they are not dealt with by authorities.

Other raids across Arizona

Arizona has always been known for having very strict laws relating to gambling. Apart from a number of tribal casino operators in the state, there is not much legal gambling. This is why the authorities are kept busy clamping down on illegal gambling operations.

It was in March 2019 that almost $1m in cash was seized by ADG agents relating to two pool halls in Phoenix, which also operated as illegal gambling operations.

In January 2019, the ADG concluded a seven-month investigation by taking down an illegal gambling operation in Phoenix. The search warrant was served on Toso’s Sports Bar & Grill and Real Poker LLC, resulting in several devices and a sum of cash being seized.