July 16, 2019
Harris County prosecutors have dismissed charges against nine defendants who ran two Houston poker rooms, and have referred the cases to the FBI for consideration.
Citing potential conflicts of interest, prosecutors have asked federal authorities to review material gathered during an investigation of two Houston poker rooms, District Attorney Kim Ogg announced Tuesday.
Prosecutors are also filing paperwork to return approximately $206,000 in gambling proceeds seized from the defendants.
“We are dedicated to transparency and fairness and we have turned over the organized crime and money laundering investigation of these poker clubs to federal investigators,” Ogg said.
The defendants were charged in May with first-degree money laundering for alleged actions taken while being owners or operators of the Post Oak Poker Club and Prime Social Poker Room.
Among multiple potential conflicts of interest, the District Attorney’s Office identified a potential defense witness who is a former contract employee and a political fundraiser.
As for potential conflicts linked to other person or entities, Ogg said she was not at liberty to discuss them.
“We discovered this and we want to ensure than an outside agency independently reviews everything,” Ogg said.