8-liner establishments forced to close in Cameron County
Sun, 14 Apr 2013 04:38:42 GMT —
A total of 5, 8-liner establishments now closed. Cameron County, state and federal law enforcement agencies worked day and night to crack down on illegal 8-liner establishments.Currently there are 200 8-liner businesses operating in the County and authorities say they're not done yet.Day and night authorities worked to crack down on the 8-liner industry infesting Cameron County.An investigation under the direction of homeland security began 18 months ago."The element that the illegal 8-liner industry brings is criminal element...It involves bribery of public officials home invasions and other related armed robberies," Cameron County District Attorney Luis Saenz said.A total of eight arrested and more to come.Among those eight, Cameron County Tax Collector Tony Yzaguirre TMs son-in-law, Rigoberto Gonzalez.He's the only owner of one of the establishments that is now shut down.Six other arrest were made.
Stephanie Ivette MartinezCarlos Aguirre MartinezPriscilla PazJose Juan PeralesLucero PizanoVicente Salas"Our policy was that we were not going to arrest what we call floor walkers because we believe these are people making minimum wage to that effect we focused on making arrest of mid level and upper level," Saenz said.Cameron County District Attorney Luis Saenz said this industry is estimated to generate 300 million dollars yearly.Saenz said this is money that is known to leave the County and even Texas.Cameron County Sheriff Omar Lucio said these arcades create a bad environment.Opening up a slew of criminal activity ranging from money laundering, bribery and home invasions."The District Attorney, Mr. Saenz the problem that we have been seeing is that they were having some of these armed robberies and some shooting as I mentioned here and people were spending their money there and that TMs not the way that works," Lucio said.According to Lucio, the issue was that after a place was raided, arrest were made and their cases were dismissed.Machines were also given back to property owners who then would turn around and open up the illegal establishment right back up.Now property seized will be destroyed.Five 18 wheelers were used to seize the 456 machines.Authorities say this is the first of what TMs to come.According to Saenz the name Operation Bishop stems from a call the bishop made concerning how these businesses were effecting poor people.Action 4 News tried to contact the Brownsville Diocese no comment as of yet.Click here to follow Veronica on FacebookClick here to follow Veronica on Twitter