On Friday morning, The Houston Police Department chief and prosecutors appeared at a news conference to discuss their two-year operation to clean up crime in southwest Houston.
During the presser, authorities said Houston police officer Thomas Lam was among the five people arrested in an illegal gambling operation.
NEW: HPD officer Thomas Lam arrested and charged in connection to an illegal game room. DA says he decided who was allowed in. He’s one of 5 ppl arrested in busy last night. 41 ppl arrested total in 2yr investigation. #abc13 pic.twitter.com/JrL28hb5tj— Courtney Fischer (@CourtneyABC13) October 19, 2018
Lam has been a part of HPD for more than a decade, according to Chief Art Acevedo.
Ogg said that $2.4 million were seized, and 41 people have been arrested during the two-year operation.
Authorities targeted the Cafe Thanh Quynh gaming establishment located in the 10800 block of Bellaire Blvd.
MAJOR gambling/ money laundering operation busted in Chinatown. @kimoggforda and @ArtAcevedo announce 5 ppl arrested—including a @houstonpolice officer. In total: that makes 3 HPD officers arrested in this 2yr investigation. #abc13 pic.twitter.com/cM7rI1cX0a— Courtney Fischer (@CourtneyABC13) October 19, 2018
Officials say Lam decided who could and could not get through the door.
"Evidence shows he's (the officer) is a prolific gambler, and he gambled his career away," prosecutors said.
The news comes about seven months after officials first announced their operation in Chinatown when 22 people, including two Houston police officers, were arrested.
Acevedo says the officers all violated the public's trust, and there's no room for that.
"He's a disgrace to the badge, he's a disgrace to the uniform," Acevedo said.
Authorities said that these illegal activities in the Chinatown area have negatively affected the community, leading to a series of robberies and violent crimes.
Clerks who work at the establishments and owner/operators are among those charged in the investigation.
The five people arrested Thursday night will be charged with money laundering and illegal gambling.
SEE MORE: 2 HPD officers charged with money laundering in illegal gambling investigation
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