SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — Two men were arrested in San Jose following a police raid on an illegal gambling operation that also led to the discovery of a massive marijuana grow next door, police announced Thursday.
The underground casino was discovered during the summer operating out of a business on the 1600 block of Rogers Ave., an industrial area just north of the Interstate 880 / U.S. Highway 101 interchange. San Jose police said the location was a hub for a variety of illegal activities, including gambling, drug dealing, and the buying and selling of stolen property.READ MORE: Scott Peterson Returning To San Mateo County Courtroom Wednesday For Re-Sentencing
On September 17, officers served a search warrant on the location and several occupants fled by breaking interior walls and tunneling into adjacent businesses, police said.
“During the execution of that search warrant, people started running,” said police spokesman Sgt. Christian Camarillo. “People started popping out and coming out of backdoors of an adjacent business. So officers quickly detained them. We did find a series of pathways connecting these two different businesses.”
When detectives re-traced the suspects’ path, they discovered one of the businesses they passed through was a massive illegal indoor marijuana growing operation. After obtaining a search warrant for the new location, police seized approximately 33 pounds of marijuana, 25 pounds of THC product, two handguns, and a loaded high-capacity rifle magazine.
The new investigation led police to identify the proprietors of the casino and marijuana grow operation as San Jose residents John Le, 45, and Mike Le, 36. The relationship between the two is unknown, police said.READ MORE: Major Outage Strikes Amazon Web Services ; Netflix, Venmo, Instacart Among Many Affected Sites
On October 29, officers arrested both John Le and Mike Le and served a search warrant at their homes. Officers recovered an additional 300 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $600,000, $30,000 in cash, two firearms, and ammunition.
Police said both John and Mike Le are prohibited from possessing firearms. Both were booked into Santa Clara County Jail on charges of running an underground casino operation, weapons possession, and marijuana sales.
Anamarie Fernandes, a neighboring business owner in the same building, often smelled the odor of marijuana penetrating the walls. Fernandes was pleased to hear about the arrests.
“Good riddance,” said Fernandes. “Being a small business owner, and trying to do things the right way, you know? I know it’s easier to make money illegally. But that ain’t the way to do business. Gotta do it the right way. That way nobody gets in trouble.”
Both suspects have since posted bail and are awaiting court appearances.MORE NEWS: Retailers To Hire San Francisco Sheriff's Deputies To Deter Retail Theft, Smash-and-Grab Surge
Kiet Do contributed to this report.