Police Bust Illegal ‘Speakeasy’ at Newark Soccer Club, Arrest Three
NEWARK — Police have arrested three men in connection with another pop-up, "speakeasy" type operation in the city, where authorities said a crowd was found drinking and gambling illegally.
On Saturday night around 10 p.m., Newark Police responded to the Portuguese Soccer Club at 215 Wilson Avenue, Newark Public Safety Director Anthony Ambrose said.
Police said there were about 50 people inside, some using gambling machines, as 61-year-old Victor Pereira was serving as bartender with a fully stocked bar of more than 400 bottles of beer, wine and liquor.
Investigators also found 53-year-old José DaSilva, the manager, who was unable to provide officers with the legal paperwork for selling alcohol.
As police entered the building, Ambrose said, they had seen 31-year-old Byron Barraza unlocking a gate at the location for patrons to enter and exit.
Both Pereira and DaSilva have been charged with maintaining an unlawful liquor establishment, possession of alcohol, illegal sale of alcohol and possession of gambling devices.
Barraza faces a charge of aiding and abetting.
Police confiscated all the alcohol as well as $6,829 in cash from the illegal sale of drinks and gambling proceeds.
It's not the first such "speakeasy" busted in the city during the pandemic.
Two weeks earlier, a pair of Irvington women were arrested for organizing back-to-back crowded events in a warehouse, including a full-scale indoor soccer match, and illegally serving alcohol.
Rosa E. Mainato, 23, and Fanny Camas, 27, each was charged with maintaining an unlicensed liquor establishment in the weekend incidents at 223 Verona Avenue.
Back in December, two women were arrested in connection with an illegal warehouse operation which attracted a crowd of about 200.
Denisse Tinizaray, 26, and Katherine Tinizaray, 28, both of Newark, were charged with maintaining an illegal liquor establishment, stemming from the December incident.