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St. Clair County man faces new felony gambling charges in Genesee County following conviction in Macomb County case

Detroit, June 24, 2020A 57-year-old St. Clair County man convicted earlier this year in Macomb County Circuit Court for running an illegal gambling operation now faces six new felony charges in Genesee County’s 67th District Court. The new charges — related to his alleged relationship with a suspected Flint Township illegal gambling operation — resulted from a joint investigation by the Michigan Department of Attorney General and the Michigan Gaming Control Board.

David Hoppe of East China Township was arraigned on the charges Tuesday. The warrant was signed by 67th District Court Judge Jessica Hammon on June 11. The charges stem from Hoppe allegedly supplying illegal gambling games to Spin City, G-3490 Miller Road, Flint Township, between May 2017 and February 2019. The games were the same type found at the former 777 Café he operated at 32488 Gratiot Ave., Roseville.

“Illegal gambling often is used to fund organized crime,” said Rick Kalm, MGCB executive director. “It also diverts money from schools and local communities that benefit from taxes paid by regulated commercial gaming and revenue sharing from tribal casinos.”

In the Flint Township case, Hoppe was charged with:

  • Four 10-year felony counts of aiding and abetting an unlicensed gambling operation

  • One 10-to-20-year felony count of using a computer to commit a crime

  • One 20-year felony count of racketeering by conducting a criminal enterprise at both Spin City in Flint Township and 777 Café in Roseville

“Illegal gambling operations are not a victimless crime,” Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said. “State gaming regulations direct much-needed financial resources to where they’re needed, like schools and other agencies providing valuable services to residents. When illegal gambling operations siphon money away from establishments that follow the rules, residents across the state suffer.”

Hoppe is scheduled for a probable cause conference July 2. He was given a $70,000 personal bond.

On Jan. 30, a Macomb County jury found Hoppe guilty of one count of running an illegal gambling operation at the café. He also was convicted on two counts of using computers to commit a crime and a misdemeanor charge of running a gambling house for gain. On March 5, Hoppe was sentenced to a year of probation and 40 hours of community service for the crimes.

In 2013, Hoppe pled guilty in 72nd District Court to a one-year misdemeanor charge of maintaining a gaming or gambling place. As part of a plea arrangement, Hoppe agreed he would not make available to the public any gaming machines not certified as non-gambling devices by either the MGCB or a laboratory the MGCB deemed eligible to test and certify such machines. The agreement led to dismissal of a 10-year felony charge of conducting a gambling operation where wagering was used without a license.

Michigan residents are urged to report illegal or suspicious gambling activity through the MGCB’s anonymous tip line, 888-314-2682.

"The Michigan Gaming Control Board shall ensure the conduct of fair and honest gaming to protect the interests of the citizens of the State of Michigan."