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Legal & Regulatory

Key Crown Resorts directors resign after landmark ruling

Several directors have resigned from the board of Crown Resorts following the decision finding the operator unsuitable to hold a gaming licence in Sydney, New South Wales.

crownNSW

It was reported on 9 February that an 18-month inquiry found the Australian casino operator was not suitable to operate a casino in Barangaroo, Sydney after evidence was found that its facilities and accounts were used for money laundering.

The inquiry, led by former Supreme Court judge Patricia Bergin, also found the operator engaged with junket operators who had alleged connections to organised crime, and now puts in doubt the operator’s ability to open its already built AU$2.2bn ($1.7bn) casino, unless serious reforms are made.

And now, Crown Resorts directors Guy Jalland and Michael Johnston have announced their resignations from the board of directors.

Both Jalland and Johnston are key officials at Crown Resorts majority owner James Packer’s Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH).

In her ruling, Judge Bergin said Johnston’s multiple roles exposed him to being “riddled with conflicts” and had doubts Crown Resorts could be “converted into a suitable person” while Johnston and others remained as directors.

Additionally, non-executive director John Poynton is no longer a CPH nominee on the Crown Board, after his consultancy arrangement with CPH was terminated, meaning CPH is no longer separately represented on the operator’s board.

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