CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. - Tens of thousands of dollars were seized in a major illegal gambling bust Wednesday.
Channel 2’s Erin Coleman was with Clayton County officers as they raided nine stores simultaneously. FBI and Internal Revenue Service agents joined in making dozens of arrests of store clerks and customers across the county.
At a Morrow store, officers collected three bags full of money -- one of which had all $100 bills. In Jonesboro, officers also used a K-9 unit to search for drugs. Store clerks were arrested in Jonesboro, Morrow and Lovejoy.
Undercover officers have been investigating for weeks, playing the gambling machines and getting cash payouts from the stores, which is illegal. In almost every case, the gambling machines were behind closed doors.
“[It’s] right under the watchful eye of the manager,” Clayton County Sheriff Kem Kimbrough said.
At the Hub Food Mart on Tara Boulevard, deputies said they also found a fugitive hidden behind the counter. Omari Williams has been wanted on aggravated assault charges for a year. He told Coleman he was just “coming to get something from the store.”
So far, deputies have counted $63,00 seized, along with five vehicles and more than 50 machines. They arrested 18 people in the bust.