Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia – Texas Penal Code §47.06

Texas Criminal Law

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The Texas Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia law gives police the right to arrest you if they believe you owned, manufactured, transferred, or possessed gambling equipment or gambling device with the intent to “further gambling.”

The Texas legislature codified this criminal offense in Texas Penal Code Section 47.06. The law was not updated in 2023. In fact, this law has not been amended since 1993.

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Gambling is generally illegal in Texas, and this law is only one of several gambling-related criminal offenses in Texas. Learn more about other gambling laws here.

The Penal Code classifies the Texas Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia law under Title 10 “Offenses Against Public Health, Safety, And Morals,” Chapter 47 “Gambling.” Learn more about the Texas offense of Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia below.

What is the current Texas law about Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia?

The current Texas law defines the offense of Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia in Penal Code Section §47.06 as follows:[1]

(a) A person commits an offense if, with the intent to further gambling, he knowingly owns, manufactures, transfers, or possesses any gambling device that he knows is designed for gambling purposes or any equipment that he knows is designed as a subassembly or essential part of a gambling device.

(b) A person commits an offense if, with the intent to further gambling, he knowingly owns, manufactures, transfers commercially, or possesses any altered gambling equipment that he knows is designed for gambling purposes or any equipment that he knows is designed as a subassembly or essential part of such device.

(c) A person commits an offense if, with the intent to further gambling, the person knowingly owns, manufactures, transfers commercially, or possesses gambling paraphernalia.

What are the other gambling laws?

The Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia law is only one of the crimes related to gambling in Texas.

Other criminal offenses in Texas related to gambling include:

How can I be charged with a Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia offense in Texas?

You can be charged with Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia if the state’s attorneys believe that each of the elements of 47.06(a), (b) or (c), as described in the section above, have been met.

What is the statute of limitation for Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia in Texas?

As a misdemeanor, Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia charges have a two-year limitations period.[2]

What is the penalty for a Texas Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia offense?

A conviction for Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia in Texas is punished as a Class A misdemeanor,[3] with a maximum possible fine under Texas state law of up to $4,000 and jail time of up to one year. Learn about the differences between grades of felonies and misdemeanors here.

Can you get probation for Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia in Texas?

The Texas Code of Criminal Procedure allows both judges and juries to grant probation for Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia, and judges are also allowed to accept deferred adjudication plea deals.[4]

Note, however, that judges may not grant community supervision after a conviction if (1) the defendant used or exhibited a deadly weapon during the commission of the felony or immediate flight thereafter and (2) the defendant used or exhibited the deadly weapon himself or was a party to the offense and knew that a deadly weapon would be used or exhibited.[5]

What level of crime is Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia in Texas?

The Penal Code classifies Possession of Gambling Device, Equipment, or Paraphernalia as a Class A misdemeanor.

Learn more about the penalty range for this offense in the section above.


^1. Texas Penal Code §47.06. This law is current as of the 88th Legislature Regular Session.^2. See Code of Criminal Procedure 12.02(a)^3. Texas Penal Code §47.06(e)^4. See Chapter 42, Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, Art. 42A.054, Art. 42A.056, Art. 42A.102 .^5. Art. 42A.054(b), Texas Code of Criminal Procedure


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