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CasinoLegal & RegulatoryIndustry

Crown Resorts ‘not suitable’ to hold Sydney casino license, inquiry hears

An inquiry into Crown Resorts has been told that the company and major shareholder James Packer are not suitable to hold the license to operate Sydney’s new multi-billion dollar casino. 

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The New South Wales Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA) has been analysing the conduct of Crown and its casinos in Perth and Melbourne, as well as its international VIP gaming operations. 

The new $2.2bn casino in Barangaroo, central Sydney, is expected to open in December, but the ILGA inquiry has raised serious questions as to Crown’s suitability to oversee its operations. 

The inquiry pointed to the company’s failure to report signs of money laundering within its casinos, as well as its reported business operations with junket operators who had strong links to organised crime. 

“The evidence presented to this inquiry demonstrates that the licensee is not a suitable person to continue to give affect to the license,” Counsel Assisting Adam Bell said in his final submissions on Wednesday. 

Bell also told the inquiry that the influence of Packer and his private company Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH) contributed to the arrest of Crown staff in China four years ago for promoting gambling. 

“It's submitted that the impact of that influence put Crown Resorts in breach of its regulatory agreements with the authority,” he added. 

“In those instances the adverse impact of CPH and Mr Packer, we submit, was ultimately harmful to the public interest, which is a primary object of the Casino Control Act to protect.” 


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