U.S. Attorney Kenji Price announced this morning the file of criminal charges against 15 people, seizures of 60 illegal gambling machines and homes in Waipahu and Pearl City plus cash from bank accounts he said are all linked to illegal gambling in Oahu, Honolulu.
“With today’s announcement of criminal charges, civil forfeitures complaints and seizures, we’re communicating a very clear message to illegal game room owners. Our goal is to take your property through civil or criminal forfeiture. And if you or anyone else you know happens to get a cut of the proceeds of illegal gambling, we’ll be trying to seize that too,” he said.
Price said a continuing joint federal-city effort to crack down on illegal gambling activities in Oahu, resulted in the filing of three charges, two criminal complaints and a civil lawsuit.
His office, the FBI, Homeland Security Investigations, Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Honolulu Police Department are among the organizations engaged in the attempt.
Homeland Security Investigations ‘ Acting Special Agent in Charge John Tobon said that generally the attraction of illegal gambling is indicative of other illegal activity with drug and guns purchased with the proceeds.
Price said that illegal gambling also attracts other offences such as theft and incendiary.
According to one of the charges, a individual who had a rented room in a Waipahu warehouse, set fire to the building last April after the landlord discovered that the individual used the room for illegal gambling and took measures to evict him.