New Castle News

May 1, 2014

Liquor Control hits 35 bars in gambling raid

By Staff
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — About 35 Lawrence County bars and clubs were hit and 74 machines seized in a gambling raid Wednesday afternoon.

More than $80,000 related to the gambling activities was collected as well.

No arrests have been made yet, according to state police.

More than 100 state police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement officers inspected for video gambling machines at 35 establishments that hold liquor licenses.

Also searched was Medure ATM Service Providers Inc., at 114-116 Atlantic Ave., and the residence of company president Frank Medure of 9 Ciara Drive.

Police said the raid culminated a 13-month investigation into illegal gambling in Lawrence County.

Sgt. Todd Post of the Liquor Control Enforcement unit in Erie, said the raid was led by the bureau’s compliance, gambling and auditing unit and included officers from many of the bureau’s nine district enforcement offices.

Assistance also was provided by the department’s bureaus of criminal investigation and communications and information services, as well as state police from Troops D and E.

Post said the design and operation of all machines seized  makes them illegal throughout North America.

The investigation is continuing and arrests could be made later, he said.

According to a Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement news release, the bureau before and during its investigation had received complaints and phone calls from concerned citizens regarding the illegal gambling devices in establishments licensed through the Liquor Control Board.

Those calls prompted the investigation, the release said, and the bureau credits those citizens with providing information.

Anyone with additional information regarding suspected illegal gambling and activity in or around the county is asked to contact the bureau’s Erie district enforcement office at (814) 217-0001.