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Nearly 60 Electronic Gaming Machines Seized In Illegal Gambling Raid In Berks County

READING, Pa. (AP) -- Pennsylvania State Police along with Berks County law enforcement officers seized nearly 60 electronic gaming machines during a raid on a business, authorities said Friday. Berks County District Attorney John Adams announced Thursday's operation during a news conference, saying almost $68,000 had been confiscated along with the machines from the 777 Casino in Kenhorst, Pennsylvania, operated by Windfall Amusements.

No charges had been filed as of Friday in what Adams said was an ongoing investigation.

Adams said the tip about allegedly illegal gambling machines came from an anonymous source who contacted the State Police. He said investigators read about the business in newspaper articles because the operators had sought approvals from several borough entities to adjust its hours of operations and to add additional gaming machines.

Capt. James Jones with the State Police said it's not unusual for gaming facilities to operate in the open.

"We frequently encounter machines that have been permitted by local municipalities in some way or another," he said. "I don't know that it's the (municipality's) responsibility to know what games would be legal when they are licensing a business... We have not encountered any of these machines in our investigations that are legal to operate."

Adams noted that the business that advertised itself on Facebook as a casino, was not licensed to be a casino. The machines were not monitored like those operated at licensed casino facilities.

Adams said Penn National Gaming had received a license to open a casino currently under construction in Berks County. He said it had paid nearly $7.5 million to the state to become licensed, while 777 paid nothing.

"The state receives from a licensed casino a percentage of slot machine revenue. They were receiving no revenue from Windfall Amusements, whatsoever," Adams said.

Adams said the investigation is ongoing and charges may follow. A Facebook page for 777 had been shut down early Friday and calls to a number listed for Windfall Amusements were not answered.

(©Copyright 2020 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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