Crown Resorts CEO denies money laundering accusations

By Owain Flanders

John Alexander, Crown Resorts CEO, has denied allegations of money laundering, blaming activists with an "anti-Crown agenda" for releasing the stories.

Earlier this month, CCTV footage from Melbourne’s Crown Casino showed more than AU$100,000 (US$67,665) being exchanged for high-value casino chips in an alleged incident of money laundering.

The video was leaked to independent MP Andrew Wilkie, who called for a royal commission into the casino by three Victorian state gambling inspectors.

Alexander denounced the allegations at Crown’s AGM, reassuring shareholders the claims could not be verified by the newspapers that published them.

Alexander said: "Let me be clear, Crown does not tolerate any illegal activity by its employees or its patrons.

"As someone who has 50 years' experience in journalism and media management, and who was once Editor-in-chief of both The Sydney Morning Herald and the Australian Financial Review, I have never seen a quality news organisation publish a story it openly admits it hasn’t been able to verify.

"I do acknowledge these sensationalist allegations have raised some concern among our stakeholders. I can personally assure you we are taking these matters seriously."

The operator was in the spotlight again recently, after an ABC Australia report claimed Crown’s Melbourne and Perth casinos played host to a former arms dealer.

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