Police: Man ran half-dozen illegal gambling rooms in Austin area


Highlights

Chong Pak, 53, has been arrested in connection to an illegal gambling operation in Austin.

Police found nearly $750,000 in cash in Pak’s home after serving a warrant, officials said.

Police believe Pak owned six to eight game rooms in the Austin area.

Austin police have arrested a man in connection to citywide illegal gambling activities, but the case remains open as they expect to file more charges in the future against others, police said.

Authorities identified 53-year-old Chong Pak as their primary suspect in the case. No other warrants have been issued yet, police said.

In January, Austin police began an investigation into several illegal gambling operations throughout the Austin area, according to a news release.

After police maintained surveillance on Pak and his associates for three months, they conducted a search of Pak’s home at the 1200 block of Augusta Bend in Hutto, officials said.

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In the home, police said they found $724,736 in cash believed to be income derived from the operation of the illegal game rooms, three vehicles valued at $94,550, and approximately $7,500 in gold and silver ingots.

Police believe Pak owned six to eight game rooms where he operated straight-line machines. He also leased machines for other illegal operations in the area, officials said.

People who play with these particular machines do not have a “legitimate” chance of winning, police said.

These activities are of interest to police because of the related crimes that could occur, such as robberies and violent crimes, police said.

Austin police believe there are about 80 illegal gambling operations housed in warehouses, homes and storefronts throughout the Austin area, said Austin police Cmdr. Troy Officer of APD’s organized crime unit.

Pak was arrested and charged with money laundering and engaging in organized crime, the release said. If convicted, Pak could face up to life in prison and a $10,000 fine, the release said.



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