AUSTIN (KXAN) – Police have charged a man suspected of operating several illegal gambling businesses with engaging in organized criminal activity, according to a July 14 arrest warrant.
On July 10, Austin police raided a game room with 8-liner machines they suspect 40-year-old Amjid Hussaain Shah operated near the intersection of East 49th Street and Interstate 35, according to an arrest warrant.
Once inside, authorities seized 32 machines and identified several players as well as two attendants and a guard, the affidavit states. The guard told police he was being paid $10 an hour by Shah, who also goes by the name “Rocco,” according to the affidavit.
Four of the five people playing the machines told police they received cash money for the winnings, which is illegal, according to the warrant.
Authorities suspect Shah of running as many as five illegal gambling places. The game rooms have electronic games similar to slot machines.
The charge against Shah is a third-degree felony.
All over town
A KXAN investigation has found illegal gambling rooms, like the one police suspect Shah of operating, have been opening all over town and police have had trouble keeping up with them.
The electronic slot machines are legal, so long as players are not paid money for winning.
An Austin Police Department Sergeant in April said that in addition to being illegal, the 8-liner rooms attract criminals and become hot spots for crime.