Florida: Law-enforcement agents raid illegal gambling houses in Hamilton County

April 11, 2024 1:29 PM
Photo: Courtesy
  • Rege Behe, CDC Gaming Reports
April 11, 2024 1:29 PM
  • Rege Behe, CDC Gaming Reports

The Florida Gaming Control Commission’s Division of Gaming Enforcement this week executed two search warrants in White Springs, Hamilton County.

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According to a news release, the Florida Highway Patrol’s Rapid Response Team, along with members of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, and investigators from the State Attorney’s Office of the 3rd Circuit assisted FGCC agents in the investigation and execution of the warrants.

“The state of Florida will not condone illegal gambling,” said FGCC Executive Director Lou Trombetta in a statement.

Three arrests were made at Coff33 Café on charges of Possession of Slot Machines and Keeping a Gambling House. Two arrests were made at the Social Center charges of Possession of Slot Machines and Keeping a Gambling House.

Special agents found and seized approximately 179 suspected illegal gambling devices, computers, ATMs, and an underdetermined amount of cash at the illegal gambling houses.

“The FGCC will continue to combat illicit gambling to protect the safety of Florida’s communities, and we appreciate the public’s help in identifying suspected illegal gambling sites,” said FGCC Director of Law Enforcement Carl Herold.

In Florida, slot machines are legal only in the eight pari-mutuel facilities in Miami-Dade and Broward counties and at sites operated by the Seminole Tribe of Florida. One hundred percent of legal-gambling slot-tax revenue directly funds the Florida Educational Enhancement Trust Fund, which supports such education initiatives as Bright Futures; the initiative received $240.8 million in fiscal year 2021/2022.