LOS ANGELES, April 4 Federal agents from several
agencies raided the Bicycle Hotel & Casino in a Los Angeles
suburb on Tuesday as part of an ongoing investigation, forcing
its temporary closure, officials said.
The operation in Bell Gardens, southeast of downtown Los
Angeles, was conducted by the Los Angeles High Intensity
Financial Crime task force and based on a federal warrant, U.S.
law enforcement officials said in a statement.
Officials released few other details, saying they could not
disclose the nature of the investigation because the warrant was
filed under seal.
The team conducting the raid includes members of the
Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs
Enforcement, and the California Bureau of Gambling Control,
according to the statement.
"We are working with authorities and currently do not have
additional information," Becky Warren, a spokeswoman for the
casino, said by phone. "As soon as the federal agents have
completed their work we will be in full operation."
In 1991, the federal government took over partial ownership
of the Bicycle Casino, which opened in 1984, after a jury found
$12 million of the $22 million used for its construction came
from narcotics smuggling, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The U.S. government sold its ownership stake in 1996, and in
late 2015, the casino expanded by opening a 99-room hotel.
The Bicycle has nearly 200 tables for poker and other card
games and ranks as one of the largest employers in Bell Gardens.
(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by