Police in Beaumont, Texas have raided what they claim is an illegal Internet betting operation offering video poker action through phone card payments in an Internet Cafe.
Officers told the local KFDM-TV News that they have evidence that members of the public can enter the Internet Cafe,
pay for a card, swipe it on a computer, play online poker and cash in any winnings. The raid follows a two week investigation, and led to the arrest of two as yet unnamed men aged 29 and 41 and the seizure of 31 computers and diverse financial records. One man's home was also searched under a county warrant.
Police believe the men were taking in between US$ 25 000 and US$ 30 000 each week.
"We've got a bunch of heavy hitters that are going to assist us trying to follow the money and see what these individuals are doing with the money they're getting from this illegal business operation," Major Jim Singletary of the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office told KFDM-TV.
Several agencies are participating in the investigation, including the ATF, ICE and the FBI.
The two men are each facing two Class A misdemeanors, one for gambling promotion and one for running a gambling operation.
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