There has been an ongoing effort to crack down on illegal gambling in the state of California. This includes police raids on alleged ‘slaphouses.’ This is the term given to residences and/or businesses used as a front for illegal gambling activity.
The reference to the act of slapping is tied to certain controls on the games themselves. Abandoned buildings are a prime target for a slaphouse. So are innocent looking storefronts under the guise of operating a legitimate business.
Local news sources in Anaheim detailed the account of recent raids in that general area. In one raid, 70 people were arrested in a business front alleged to be an illegal gambling location. Police on the scene confiscated several gambling machines. They discovered firearms during this raid which were seized as well.
The business in question was a furniture store. As police started to gather near the store, suspects began to flee out of broken windows. They attempted to get away on foot. Video coverage of the event showed people running from the building across the street.
The furniture store had been under surveillance for at least two months. This was according to a local Orange County news source. This was related to a series of complaints that had been filed with the news source. Those complaints revolved around unusual activity at the store 24 hours a day.
In a previous raid back in October of last year, more than 70 people were apprehended. The location of this raid was the building next door to the most recent raid. Of the 70 suspects detained, 25 were given citations for illegal gambling and drug violations.
That raid also led to the arrest of 13 individuals on more serious charges. This list includes outstanding warrants, parole violations and gambling violations. Those cases proceeded through the court system.
The storefront in question was vacant at the time of the October raid. It previously housed a hydroponics operation. Police confiscated more than two dozen gambling machines at that time. There was also a sizable amount of currency seized in the raid. In addition, police reports mention three handguns and various drugs and drug paraphernalia being present at that location.
Going back to the beginning of last year, raids have also taken place in the Long Beach region. They have been conducted sporadically over the past 12 months. Two locations mentioned by name were a vacant dollar store in Zaferia and a thrift shop in North Long Beach.
Police records also show that raids took place between July and December of 2019. Those raids shut down eight different sites on the grounds of illegal gambling.
There has been increased activity against illegal gambling operations in a number of different states. Recent news reports out of Texas made note of two police raids in Hood County and in Anaheim CA. In those raids, 88 illegal gambling devices were seized. This information was related through a news source in the Fort Worth area.