JONESBORO - A magistrate judge was among the dozens of people arrested at an illegal casino, the second gambling bust in suburban Atlanta this week, authorities said Wednesday.
They also said one person was charged with trying to bribe the sheriff.
Booking was still under way Wednesday morning for the 52 people rounded up Tuesday night at the Poker Palace in Jonesboro. Most have been charged with misdemeanor gambling. The sting came after a monthlong investigation by the Clayton County Sheriff's office vice unit.
Sheriff Victor Hill said the casino had been operating for about two years. Whether those arrested knew what they were doing was illegal is irrelevant, he said.
"Ignorance is no excuse under the law," Hill said. "You can't walk into a courtroom and say, 'I didn't know,'"
He identified the arrested Clayton County magistrate judge as Dorian Murry.
Meanwhile, another man faces a bribery charge after Hill says he was offered up to $5,000.
Hill said that before the raid, the owner of the Poker Palace, Mike Adams, and an associate, Earl Norman, invited Hill to lunch to talk to him about the Poker Palace and offered him a bribe.
Norman has been charged with bribery. Hill said the investigation continues concerning Adams, who was present when the offer was made.
The sheriff said he hoped the timing of their request, just before the bust, was not significant.
"Let's just hope it's a coincidence," he said.
The Clayton County raid came a day after Roswell police arrested 27 people Monday night in a gambling raid there. Players had to go online and register and then receive an invitation to the game, police said.