Four Alleged Illegal Ohio Casino Dens Raided by State Gaming Officials, Police
Posted on: October 1, 2021, 02:22h.
Last updated on: September 30, 2021, 02:40h.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission (OCCC) reported this week that four alleged illegal casino businesses were raided. The venues were operating in Fayette County and were rousted by state gaming officials, with the assistance of the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office.
An OCCC release said warrants were served at four business locations. Unlicensed and unregulated gaming devices were seized from each premises.
Law enforcement carried out the searches at:
- Unique Treasures, 1131 McArthur Road, Jeffersonville
- Jackpots, 1329 US Route 35, Washington Court House
- Miss Kay’s, 1143 US Route 22 SW, Washington Court House
- Shamrock’s, 1572 US Route 22, Washington Court House
The OCCC says multiple complaints filed with the state gaming agency and local law enforcement regarding gaming terminals paying out cash rewards at each business prompted the raids.
“The operators of these illegal casinos took advantage of their community to line their own pockets in blatant disregard of the law,” declared Matthew Schuler, executive director of the Ohio Casino Control Commission.
“The Commission is tasked with ensuring gaming in Ohio is conducted honestly and with integrity, and we will continue to take action against those who violate Ohio’s gaming laws,” Schuler added.
Ohio gaming officials said numerous gaming machines were confiscated during the four raids. Money and documents detailing the operations of each business were also seized. The OCCC release did not detail the number of gaming devices apprehended, nor total dollar amount taken.
Agents seized gaming equipment, cash, and documents from all locations. No arrests were made, and the investigation is ongoing,” the OCCC statement explained.
According to Ohio’s criminal code, people found guilty of operating a gambling house face a first-degree misdemeanor charge on their first offense. If the offender has previously been convicted of a gambling offense, the person faces a fifth-degree felony and more substantial penalties.
“F-5 violations are among the least severe, requiring between six and 12 months of imprisonment, and up to a $2,500 fine,” explained Ohio law firm Spaulding & Kitzler. “The court may impose an additional five years of community control.”
Legal Gaming Nearby
The alleged underground gambling dens recently raided in Fayette County are only a short drive from legal, regulated racinos. The city of Washington Court House is just 50 miles from Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway and Miami Valley Gaming in Turtlecreek.
Washington Court House is even closer to a full-scale casino featuring traditional slot machines and table games. Hollywood Casino Columbus is approximately 40 miles away, a drive that typically takes about 50 minutes.
Despite legal options available, underground casinos continue to trouble law enforcement in Ohio and elsewhere across the US.
In May, four suspects in Canton, Ohio, who allegedly ran four controversial, so-called “skill gaming” enterprises, were indicted on federal charges of running illegal gambling businesses and defrauding the US government. Those cases are ongoing in Northern Ohio District Court.
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