February 14, 2017
By Denise Dillon
MARIETTA, Ga. – Luxury cars, hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, and jewelry were all seized in an illegal gambling raid. Three people are in jail after what police are calling a substantial organized crime investigation.
Marietta police said this is a result of a two-year investigation. Detectives have been watching Gantts Food on Franklin Gateway and another convenience store on Windy Hill Road which police said is owned by the same man, Khubaib Hussain.
Detectives said the gaming machines in both stores were paying out cash, and that’s illegal in Georgia.
“What they’ve been doing is paying people off in cash, anywhere from $5 to $5,000,” said Marietta Police Officer Brittany Wallace.
Monday police obtained search warrants for the two stores and the owner’s home in Douglas County. Police said they seized five vehicles, $250,000 cash, jewelry, computers and a phone.
Hussain along with two employees were arrested and charged with felony commercial gambling. Tuesday night, they were in the Cobb County Jail, but the stores were open, minus the gaming machines. Those were seized by state authorities Tuesday afternoon.
Nikki Tavares is a customer of Gantts Food. She said she often saw people playing the machines.
“People come and sit at the machines and they smoke their cigarettes, but I didn’t think they were doing anything wrong,” said Tavares.
Marietta police said the investigation involved a number of agencies including the Cobb County Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Revenue. Authorities said they are also looking into possible money laundering and tax evasion.