Gaming Control Commission Shuts Down Fort Pierce Arcade, Illegal Slot Machines Seized
Fort Pierce - Wednesday May 10, 2023: The Florida Gaming Control Commission (FGCC) agents executed a search warrant at the Midway Arcade in Fort Pierce on Tuesday and seized 93 illegal slot machines.
It was one of four arcades, in different Florida cities, that was shut down by the Commission. In all, 360 illegal slot machines were seized in the four locations, along with computers, ATM machines, cash and other assets totaling more than $1-million.
A public complaint to the Gaming Commission about Fort Pierce's Midway Arcade prompted a warning notice letter that was sent on January 27. A subsequent investigation by law enforcement uncovered extensive illegal gaming operations in St. Lucie, Hillsborough, Palm Beach, and Pinellas counties.
Illegal arcades often utilize predatory tactics to fool customers into thinking their machines are legal, but they offer no consumer rights, no guarantee of fair play, and no recourse if an operator steals their money. Illegal gambling is a criminal offense, and these operations can expose individuals to other criminal activity including armed assaults, drug trafficking, and prostitution. The FGCC will continue to collaborate with local law enforcement to combat this issue and make our communities safer.
“Illegal gambling establishments operate outside the legal, regulated market to exploit vulnerable Floridians. They are usually associated with organized crime, do not generate state tax revenue, and do not provide the same consumer protections or safeguards as legal gaming operators,” said Lou Trombetta, FGCC executive director.
Locations of arcades shut down by the Gaming Commission:
- Delray Beach in Palm Beach County - Players Paradise Arcade, 4900 Linton Blvd, Suite 31-33,
- Fort Pierce in St. Lucie County Midway Arcade, 4986 25th Street
- Tampa in Hillsborough County Lucky Game Lounge, 4802 Gunn Hwy Suite 140
- St. Petersburg in Pinellas County location was 2116 34th St. S., St. Petersburg.
Number of illegal slot machines seized at each location:
- Ft. Pierce: 93
- Delray Beach: 120
- St. Pete: 103
- Tampa Bay: 44
“The FGCC will continue to work diligently to keep Florida communities safe from crime by curbing illegal gaming, and we appreciate the public's help in identifying suspected illegal gambling sites,” said Carl Herold, FGCC’s director of law enforcement.
Residents and business owners can anonymously report any suspected illegal gambling activity by visiting:https://flgaming.gov/file-a-complaint/ or calling (850) 880-3433.
FGCC reviews all complaints it receives.