Busted: North Phoenix women arrested for illegal gambling operation

  • Two women arrested for running online casino games at their premises
  • Behind bars as part of a major Arizona state police gambling operation

Illicit gambling dens have long been regarded as the preserve of macho gangland figures with the muscle and the motivation to control the lucrative trade.

Now, in a story that has raised more than a few eyebrows, it’s been revealed that the latest duo to be lifted for facilitating illegal gambling are in fact female. Two Arizona women are currently behind bars for their part in a major gambling operation according to state police.

Handcuff behind bard
Behind bars: operating an illegal online casino will get you a one-way ticket…

The pair were busted after undercover police supposedly observed punters playing online casino games at a premises in the north of Phoenix, with the operators of the facility pocketing a share of the profits.

You can draw your own conclusions about the character of Destiny Monique Ojeda and Charece Yvonne Bryant or, if you need a little help, Google their mugshots.

Since 1980, US police have arrested more than 80,000 people for illegal gambling in a long-running campaign. And while this continues, there are signs that the country’s anti-gambling stance is steadily changing. One after the other, states are filing gambling bills seeking to circumvent the federal ban on gambling.

In the meantime however online gambling remains illegal in the US, save for a few tightly restricted exceptions. It is, perhaps, little surprise that certain entrepreneurial individuals have chosen to take matters into their own hands and set up their own gambling dens. For the hapless Destiny and Charece, the knowledge that they may one day be viewed as ahead of their time rather than as career criminals will be of scant consolation as they cool their heels in a Phoenix jail awaiting bond.

Still, as they reflect on their fate, they would do well to recall the Prohibition wave that swept through America in the 1920s, fuelling a demand for speakeasies – illicit drinking dens. Today, countless such gambling “speakeasies” are in place all across America, with officials powerless to do anything other than to symbolically bust the occasional one in a move that seemingly achieves a limited impact in terms of offering a tangible deterrent.

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