Santa Ana police bust business accused of illegal gambling

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- The Santa Ana Police Department said a gambling bust at a North Grand storefront on Wednesday resulted after a year-long investigation into the illegal operation.

Investigators said they detained 21 people and found 19 gambling video games at the Lucky 999 Cyber Internet.

Officers said they've been investigating the location for a year after complaints from people in the surrounding community about gang activity, prostitution, drugs, burglary and gambling in the area coming out of the business.

Detectives served a search warrant at 6 a.m. Cpl. Anthony Bertega with Santa Ana police said the two people accused of running the business would likely be arrested along with a person found to have a warrant. All others would likely be cited and released.

Police said the trend of illegal gambling was one growing throughout California.

"It's not just in our city, it's everywhere. A lot like the dispensaries, they open up the businesses, it's a cash business, they make a lot of money, we find out there's often narcotics involved, there's weapons involved, so it's not a safe environment," Bertegna said.

Detectives said the owners of this store didn't have a business license, so the city's code enforcement would also be running its own investigation.

People from surrounding homes and businesses told Eyewitness News they have found condoms, needles and graffiti around the property over the last year and were happy to see police responding to their concerns.
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