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Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office raids game room, arrests 7 people

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DONNA — The Hidalgo County Sheriff's Office raided a game room and arrested seven people on Thursday.

Deputies raided a game room Thursday on the 1200 block of Stites Road near Donna, according to court records.

The Sheriff's Office conducted surveillance on the game room from Jan. 23 and Jan. 30. Deputies witnessed vehicles entering and exiting the location.

Deputies also sent a confidential informant to the game room, according to court records. The informant received cash payouts on four separation occasions.

The Sheriff's Office raided the game room Thursday. Deputies seized an undisclosed amount of cash and 108 slot machines, according to court records. They also arrested seven people:

> Salma Jacqueline De Los Santos, 23, of Mission

> Daniel Contreras, 23, of Hidalgo

> Roberto Edmundo Torres, 32, of Weslaco

> Juan Angel Varela, 22, of Mission

> Rene Samperio, 47, of San Juan

> Erika Suhei Lozano, 43, of McAllen

> Carlos Enrique Varela, 48, of Mission

All seven were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity, gambling promotion, keeping a gambling place, and possession of gambling devices, equipment or paraphernalia.

Court records don't list an attorney for Contreras, who couldn't be reached for comment.

Torres and Samperio remained in jail Tuesday and couldn't be reached for comment.

Attorney Javier Villalobos of McAllen — who bonded De Los Santos, Lozano, Juan Varela and Carlos Varela out of jail — said they maintain their innocence.

"The owners generally don't work there," Villalobos said. "These people are workers and if there's anything wrong they don't know about it."

 

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