Bar owners facing charges after police find drugs, underage drinkers and stolen guns inside

Posted at 7:44 AM, Dec 06, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-07 17:07:12-05

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah -- Stolen firearms, illegal drugs, drug paraphernalia and underage drinking were all found inside a West Valley City bar early Sunday morning, according to police.

Both owners of the bar in question have been arrested on a number of charges. It all took place at the business named Hyatti, 1754 W. 3500 South.

"I always see people there a lot, three, four in the morning, still parties cracking all the time over there even during the weekdays," said Gibbran

Ahmed Al-Rakabi

Ahmed Al-Rakabi

Rossas, one of nine business owners to share a parking lot with the bar.

Shattered beer bottles and drug paraphernalia were littered outside the bar Sunday.

Police were called to the business around 3:30 a.m. regarding a large fight in the parking lot.

"Some of our officers had beer bottles and things thrown at the vehicles when we first responded, none of our offices were injured," said Lt. Jeff Conger of the West Valley City Police Department. "At one point they saw a male with a handgun displaying it in an aggressive manner, so he called for additional officers."

It was later determined, the man who displayed the weapon was the bar owner, Ahmed Monder Al Rakabl, according to the probable cause statement.

Police say most of the crowd ran back into the bar. When officers entered, they encountered 60 to 80 people inside. Police say underage drinking was taking place, as well as a number of other violations.

"Our officers wrote a search warrant, and we discovered firearms that were stolen inside the business and some drug paraphernalia and some drugs," Conger said.

Osama Al-Rekabi

Osama Al-Rekabi

Ahmed Monder Al Rakabl admitted to police he bought the firearm he displayed for $600 "on the street," the probable cause statement indicates.

According to the probable cause statement, a stolen .45 caliber handgun was found in the office drawer, a stolen .38 revolver was found in the storage room of the business inside a Shopvac, under accessory hoses.

Both weapons were listed on NCIC.

Ahmed Monder Al-Rekabi was arrested and charged with possession of a dangerous weapon, theft by receiving stolen property, rioting, threat to use a dangerous weapon, use or possession of drugs and driving on suspension.

Ahmed Monder Al-Rekabi was discovered to be a restricted person with domestic violence convictions in 2012, the probable statement reports.

The bar owner's brother, Ossama Al-Rekabi, was also arrested on charges of rioting, aggravating assault, domestic violence in the presence of a child and interrupting communication device.

Several people were also cited.

"I don't know what can you do to prevent that, I guess not much," said Andy Pham.

Andy Pham's restaurant is right next door to the bar. He said it's difficult to advertise as a family restaurant, when so much illegal activity is allegedly taking place right outside the window.

"When you have a family restaurant and kids around, and all that, it's kind of scary," Pham said.

Gibbron Rossas's smoke shop also shares a parking lot with the bar. He believes these kinds of incidents will cost him customers.

"All that drama keeps people away from West Valley, and that's what we don't need as business owners because people don't want to come around this area because they think they are going to get in a fight or stabbed or something like that," Rossas said.

Employees at Kim Long Supermarket say it's a terrible feeling knowing almost every night there is a drunk party taking place outside your business.

"Any of the businesses around here could be vulnerable, especially ours too, merchandise could be stolen easily or vandalized, we get vandalism all the time, and it's just frustrating, we had one of our fork lifts stolen in the middle of the night around 3 a.m. too," said employee Michael Ngo.

Ngo said its hard to trust a fellow business that doesn't even have a name outside their building.

"How could you say you are a business and have no sign, but have a lot of people show up, it raises a red flag that something's not right," Ngo said.

According to West Valley City police, they are in the process of working with the appropriate agencies to possibly revoke the bar's license.