Recently the home game I was playing in was greeted with a warm welcome instructions of "GET YOUR HANDS ON YOUR HEAD" while large men with machine guns drawn stormed into the room. The vice had come and raided our game.
We were doing no illegal activities whatsoever. The game had no rake, no food/beverages being sold, not hosted in a business, and was competed on equal terms. Our game fell under the state of Hawaii law of "Social Gambling" 712-1231.
We were arrested, held in jail overnight, booked, charged with "gambling" and recently our names and pictures were featured all over the state of Hawaii like we are criminals. When trying to explain to the police that our game was legal, all we were met with is an insistence that our game was raked and was illegal.
All our the money on the table and in our pockets/bags were seized and is lost forever. The media coverage has basically portrayed us as criminals in the same class as any other murderer, drug lord, or any other criminal.
All of this over a case of guys getting together and playing a $1-$2 weekly home game. I am pleading with the poker community to please share some advice and help us!