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Raid at underground Manhattan poker club

In upper Manhattan at the New York Players Club, vice squad officers wearing bulletproof vests and raid jackets dealt the underground poker scene a losing hand. 

The team entered at 11pm and detained dealers, snatched up piles of cash and sending dozens of players home with empty pockets. Downtown, another popular card club, Playstation, also was raided. In all, police arrested 39 employees and confiscated $100,000. 

These, combined with the raids back in May (dubbed "Black Thursday" by one poker Web site), and two more last month have sent a message into the city's clandestine poker scene. Several members-only card clubs closed their doors after 13 arrests on Oct. 16 at the Broadway Club in the Flatiron District, where the Yankees' $25-million-a-year third baseman, Alex Rodriguez, reportedly had played. 

"People just want to play poker, and because there are no legal clubs in the city, they turn to underground clubs," said Hellmuth, a former World Series of Poker champion.


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