An illegal poker outfit in New York is determined to continue operating although the city filed a lawsuit against them on February 25.
According to court documents, Wendy’s Club, which is located in a building on West 46th Street, operates illegal Texas Hold’em games, attracting customers who bet large amounts of money and take drugs.
The NYDP has raided Wendy’s Club several times. During a raid on September 25, NYDP officers arrested six people and booked them for promoting illegal gambling activities. Wendy’s Club operators say that it will continue holding games although they know they may be arrested for it. They admit that they are running an illegal poker outfit, in which drugs are used, but want to continue because their business is too profitable and the state’s punishments are too mild. The chief organizer, who calls himself Jason, said: “The reward is much greater than the risk.” After the NYDP raids, the club has shifted its location, but continues to host illegal Texas Hold’em games. Jason said: “If I get arrested, it’s not going to bother me because they’ll just charge me with promotion of gambling and it will be charged as a misdemeanor.”
According to the court papers, NYDP investigators seized five cocaine bags, $8,605, and some marijuana from the venue. The six people who were arrested have also been charged with possessing marijuana illegally. The city’s aim is to get a fine of $1000 for each day poker games were organized at the venue from both the organizers of the game as well as the owner of the building.
Court documents also say that an undercover agent purchased poker chips worth hundreds of dollars and played poker games at Wendy’s Club three times in the month of September. Evan Gluck, NYPD attorney, wrote: “Since September 3, 2014, inclusive, the subject premises have been the site of at least four separate investigations of illegal gambling, in addition to the execution of the search warrant. The individuals operating this establishment and gambling participants appeared to have evinced a “business as usual” attitude in the subject premises.”
Jason has admitted that Wendy’s Club gets a cut of the profits. Jeremy Martin, owner of the Social Poker website and promoter of Wendy’s Club, says that poker room gets plenty of players, but permits the use of drugs.
Among those arrested are Joel Lyons, Ronee Barua, and Billy Chen, but none of them have made any comments.