Wake County couple charged in gambling investigation

From staff reportsSeptember 18, 2013 

— A Wake County couple surrendered Wednesday to face charges that they ran and hid an illegal gambling operation in Cumberland County.

A grand jury on Monday indicted Cathy Parker and Cecil Alfred Parker Jr. on charges that they ran dozens of illegal video gambling machines. The charges are part of Sheriff Earl “Moose” Butler’s campaign against unlawful games and payouts, according to a release from his office.

The indictments allege that the Parkers and a third man, Doug Guy, owned and operated “video poker machines and other illegal gambling devices” and paid out cash to players at Oasis Sweepstakes in Hope Mills.

In April, Cumberland County deputies seized 33 “Pot O’ Gold” games and “other gambling machines” from the operation, at 3451 Chicken Foot Road.

Further indictments allege that the Parkers conspired with Guy to disguise gambling machines by removing parts, thus obstructing a felony investigation. Guy has not yet been indicted in the case.

Cathy Parker, 51, and Cecil Parker, 56, own a home at 2001 Sageleaf Court in Raleigh, according to records.

The Parkers are accused of continuing criminal enterprise; conspiracy to commit continuing criminal enterprise; conspiracy to obstruct justice; operation of prohibited gaming machines; conspiracy to operate prohibited gaming machines; “manufacture, sale, etc.” of slot machines; and “agreements with reference to” slot machines and other devices.

The couple were held under $50,000 bail at the Cumberland County Detention Center as of Wednesday afternoon, having surrendered at the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office that morning. Their first court appearance is setfor Sept. 23.

County law enforcement may charge others in its anti-illegal-gambling campaign, including some of the Parkers’ employees, according to Ronnie Mitchell, legal counsel for the Sheriff’s Office. The Parkers may also be involved with gambling operations in other counties, Mitchell said.

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