Ohio Investigative Unit, United States Secret Service, Florida and Georgia officials conducted 34 search warrants on illegal gambling operations
(Columbus) – Earlier today, law enforcement personnel with the Ohio Investigative Unit, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the United States Secret Service conducted a total of 34 search warrants, with 30 taking place throughout Ohio, three in Florida and one in Georgia. One administrative liquor inspection was also conducted at permit premise in Springfield, as well.
During those search warrants, agents filed a total of 525 administrative charges against 22 Ohio liquor permits. Agents seized a total of 148 electronic video gambling devices. The administrative charges were knowingly permitting public gambling; keeper of the place; operating an electronic gambling machine.
Springfield liquor permits Wayside Tavern, 2288 South Yellow Springs Street; Wagon Wheel, 10005 South Burnett Avenue; Social Club, 210 West Main Street; Sidetrax Tavern, 112 West Main Street; Ole’ Brick Tavern, 3475 Mechanicsburg Road; Nite Owl Tavern, 601 West Main Street; Nifty 50’s Bar, 365 Ludlow Avenue; Main Street Pub, 2014 East Main Street; Hop Bar, 213 Lytle Avenue; County Line Drive Thru, 6978 Urbana Road; Chap’s, 2352 South Yellow Springs Street; Bogie’s Bar and Grill, 3950 Springfield-Xenia Road; Boone Saloon, 3490 Dayton Avenue; John’s Drive Thru, 826 West Main Street; and T&A Grocery, 1572 Kenton Street. The Ooh-Ooh Drive Thru, 6775 Dayton-Springfield Road in Enon was also administratively cited.
Stingers, 21702 St. Clair in Euclid; Ned’s Beverage, 5810 W. 220th in Fairview Park; York Deli, 7426 York Road, and Audrey’s Deli, 6347 State Road, both in Parma; Grand River Foods, 333 Singer Avenue in Grand River; and Liberty Tavern, 566 Liberty Street in Painesville were cited as well.
Criminal charges will be filed at later date, as law enforcement agencies continue their investigation.
“Electronic video gambling machines are illegal in Ohio,” said OIU Enforcement Commander Eric Wolf. “These companies set the odds and often times the Ohio citizens lose.”
The case is part of an on-going investigation that began in 2013, when OIU, the Secret Service and the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office began looking into those responsible for manufacturing, importing, distributing and operating illegal video slot machines.
“This case could not have been as successful if it were not for the partnerships we formed with the Florida and Georgia officials, as well as the Secret Service and the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office,” Wolf added. “These partnerships are pivotal when it comes to ensuring a safer Ohio for our residents and guests.”
After all pending criminal proceedings are completed; agents will present the administrative charges to the Ohio Liquor Control Commission. If the commission finds the liquor permit premises violated Ohio’s administrative rules, they have the authority to issue penalties, such as fines, suspensions or revocations.
Other agencies involved in the investigation include, from Ohio, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, Euclid, Parma and Springfield (Clark County) police departments, as well as, from Florida, the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office.