Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Victorian Government to investigate Crown casino crime allegations

Victorian Government to investigate Crown casino crime allegations
August 2, 2019

Victoria’s Minister for Gaming and Consumer Affairs, Marlene Kairouz has ordered the state’s casino regulator to conduct a snap investigation into a flood of allegations made against Crown Resorts and its Melbourne operation that include claims of links to organised crime and that its high rollers got waved through immigration without proper checks.

Minister Kairouz said her department would also review the regulation of junket operators who bring high rollers from China, who, according to news reports have been linked to Triad gangs.

The move follows the Federal Attorney General Christian Porter’s decision on Tuesday to refer allegations about the potential corruption of law enforcement officers to the Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity.

It also follows the revelation on Wednesday that the powerful but secretive Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) is investigating casino junkets as part of an investigation that has been on foot since September 2013.

Announcing the investigation, Minister Kairouz stated “the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) will cooperate fully with any investigation.

“I’ve asked the regulator to re-examine the allegations raised as a matter of priority and report back to me as soon as possible.

“I’ve also asked the department, with the assistance of the commission, to examine the regulatory arrangements of junket operators.”

Crown has been under scrutiny since last weekend when Nine began publishing reports in its newspapers and on its flagship television current affairs program 60 Minutes linking the casino company to triads and money laundering through its junkets.

Nine has also claimed the Chinese President Xi Jinping’s cousin and the controversial businessman and political donor Huang Xiangmo were Crown high rollers, and alleged an Australian Border Force officer moonlighted for a Crown junket operator who is wanted by Interpol and operated an illegal hunting operation in country Victoria.

On Thursday, the Guardian revealed that Crown had yet to satisfy the VCGLR it had complied with nine recommendations due to be in place a month ago that include beefing up anti-money laundering safeguards and doing more to keep criminals out of the Melbourne casino.

VCGLR Chief Executive, Catherine Myers advised “the Commission continues to undertake a thorough and rigorous assessment of the submissions made by Crown in respect to the recommendations and the outcomes will be reported back to government.”

The Guardian has confirmed reports by Nine that the ACIC believes casino junkets present a significant risk of money laundering, partly because they operate as a shadow banking system, enabling money to move around the world and hide criminal wealth.

ACIC also believes factors including the lack of transparency of junket operations and the anonymity of participants in them provide opportunities for criminal exploitation.

It says the money laundering risk is made worse because the casino’s customers are the junket operators, rather than individual gamblers.

This means that casinos are conducting important anti-money laundering “know your customer” checks not on gamblers but only on junket operators who may be difficult to fully profile because they are from overseas.

Crown has consistently denied any wrongdoing and hit back on Thursday with full-page advertisements signed by its board slamming Nine’s coverage as “a deceitful campaign against Crown”.

In a point-by-point response, Nine said its work was “carefully sourced” and Crown had refused to answer 63 questions put to it.

Related Articles

27th June 2019 - Funlab launches new Juke’s Karaoke Bar concept at Crown Melbourne

27th April 2018 - Crown casino fined for ‘blanking’ slot machines

21st March 2018 - James Packer resigns from Crown Resorts citing mental health reasons

26th June 2017 - China jails Australian Crown Resorts staff for promoting gambling

4th October 2016 - Gambling revenue dips at Crown Perth as visitor numbers fall

21st July 2015 - Destination Brisbane Consortium successful in bid to redevelop Brisbane’s Queen’s Wharf

5th July 2013 - NSW Government approves Packer plan for second Sydney casino

10th February 2013 - Global match fixing investigation focuses on Asia

8th February 2013 - Australian sport reacts to claims of doping and crime links


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

WATERPLAY Solutions Corp

Whether your goal is increasing your centre's revenues or creating an engaging environment, why not add play to your project? If you're looking for stylish aquatic play features, kid-tested…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Waterparks

 
 

AUSTRALIAN WATERSLIDES AND LEISURE

A leading designer and manufacturer of innovative waterslides and attractions, Australian Waterslides and Leisure (AWL) is also able to advise clients in the areas of concept and design, feasibility…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Waterparks

 
 

EventPro

At EventPro Software, we are proudly different from our industry competitors. We have a development-driven culture and 20 years’ experience in event, venue, and catering management software,…

read more

Events / Hospitality / Technology / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

Fun Wheels Pty Ltd

Fun Wheels Pty Ltd are the premium dealer in Australasia for the Dutch company BERG’s commercial and domestic products. Our flagship product is their revolutionary pedal go-kart – the…

read more

Attractions / Tourism / Venues

 
 

Otium Planning Group

Otium Planning Group is a contemporary sport and leisure consultancy providing services in planning, facility development, management and funding for the sport, recreation and leisure industries…

read more

Aquatics / Consultants / Recreation / Sport / Venues

 
 

Anti Wave International

Anti Wave International is the original suppliers of top performance swim, aquatic sports, leisure and pool programming equipment. Founded in 1971, Anti Wave International is proud of its…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Sport

 
 

SICO SOUTH PACIFIC

SICO is at the forefront in innovative mobile folding and rolling, space efficient tables, stages, dance floors and many other products which help our customers optimise their use of space. Image…

read more

Entertainment / Events / Venues

 
 

TouchCloud Global

Activating skyscapes for tourism, art, leisure and living TouchCloud Global (TCg) is a highly specialised international consultancy, broker and principal, devoted solely to activating and energising…

read more

Attractions / Consultants / Recreation / Safety / Tourism

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business