An illegal poker party hosted at a banquet hall in Clinton Township, Michigan, was busted by police on Thursday, February 9, it has been revealed. According to reports, a squad of 15 officers raided the Imperial House where more than 50 people had gathered to play No-Limit Texas Hold'em in an evening tournament.
Police had been informed of the poker party a number of days in advance and set up surveillance of the Imperial House last Thursday in anticipation of the evening game. The officers raided the illegal tournament at 7 p.m. local time and found poker chips, playing cards, and nearly $50,000 in cash. None of the attendees were taken into custody but police took down their personal information for the ongoing investigation.
Township Police Captain Fred Posavetz admitted, "We stopped play immediately. A lot of people had surprised looks on their face. We kind of ruined their evening, I think." He continued, "We met some reluctance but no resistance."
Posavetz said organizers had set up a cash bar and a seating chart. The tournament was also offering a large prize to its winner. "It cost $40 to get into the first round. After you advance from the first round the goal is for the card players to actually get to the final round. Who ever wins that final round wins $10,000," he said.
According to the Detroit Free Press, the owners of the Imperial House, Robert and Linda Perakis, could face charges "of operating a gambling house, maintaining a gambling house, and having a gambling apparatus on a liquor license premise." The banquet hall could also be fined by the Michigan Liquor Control Commission or have its liquor license suspended "for having a cash bar open while gambling took place."