Police in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA, raided an illegal poker club last week and arrested five people on gambling charges.
Police then arrested five employees of the club, but let the players go, the reports said.
Operators of the club, which is run as part of something called the National Poker Challenge, say their poker operation is legal because it doesn’t cost anything to participate, the reports said.
According to the operators, players play free, but if they want their statistics compiled, that costs $100, the reports said.
Then, the operators contend, the players with the top stats are invited to play in free tournaments that offer cash prizes, the reports said.
Arkansas officials say the club’s efforts to circumvent state anti-gambling laws will not work, the reports said.
County prosecutor Larry Jegley told one newspaper: “Trying to talk around the law is not the way to legalize gambling in the state of Arkansas. Changing the state statutes and the constitution that we operate under is.”
State law prohibits wagering anything of value in a card game, media reports said.
(E-mail Tom Somach at [email protected])