Father, son to be sentenced in connection with illegal gambling operation they ran in Roseville

Men maintained illegal machines at 777 Café


ROSEVILLE, Mich. – A father and son from China Township will be sentenced next month in connection with an illegal gambling operation they ran at a Roseville business.

According to officials, David John Hoppe, 57, was running the operation at 777 Café at 32488 Gratiot Avenue.

He was found guilty of one felony count of running an illegal gambling operation, two felony counts of using computers to commit a crime and a misdemeanor charge of maintaining a gambling house for gain.

His son, Lucas Hopee, 31, pleaded guilty last month to a related but reduced felony charge of attempting to run an illegal gambling operation. Three other charges were dropped as part of a plea agreement.

Charges were dropped against a third person, Denise M. Hagan, 65, of Mussey Township.

Officials said tips led to an investigation in 2018.

David Hoppe allegedly claimed that slot-style gaming terminals at 777 Cafe were certified and approved by an independent gaming lab, but the Michigan Gaming Control Board did not certify or approve the terminals.

A search warrant was executed at the café in June 2018, and investigators seized 19 gaming terminals, gaming receipts and an undisclosed amount of cash.

“Illegal gambling operations not only pose a threat to consumers through rigged games, but they also rob our schools and our government of essential funding,” said Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel. “We have gambling regulations in place to protect our residents – and those who defy those regulations will be held accountable.”

David Hoppe will be sentenced March 5, and Lucas Hoppe will be scheduled March 12. They will both be sentenced in the Macomb County Circuit Court.

Residents can report illegal or suspicious gambling activity through the MGCB’s anonymous tip line at 888-314-2682.

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