Sunday, June 4, 2023

Crown Resorts Eligible for Western Australia Gambling License

The logo of Australian casino giant Crown Resorts Ltd graces a hotel and casino complex in Melbourne, Australia, June 13, 2017. REUTERS/Jason Reed

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SYDNEY, March 24 (Reuters). A government-commissioned investigation has determined that Australian casino operator Crown Resorts Ltd (CWN.AX) is unable to obtain a gambling license in the state of Western Australia, the state’s Minister for Horse Racing and Gaming said Thursday.

“The Royal Commission has determined that Crown entities cannot currently continue to hold a gaming license for a casino in Perth,” Western Australian Gambling Minister Tony Booty told reporters.

Buti added that the investigation recommended that Crown continue to operate under the supervision of a government-appointed monitor for two years rather than revoke the license.

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The finding that Crown is not up to par with its license is consistent with previous investigations in two other states where the company, founded by billionaire James Packer, has a casino.

The state in which Crown has its most profitable resort, Victoria, also recommended keeping the company under supervision despite declaring it ineligible for a license.

A similar find in New South Wales, Australia’s most populous state, led Crown to suspend its license shortly before it opened a A$2.2 billion ($1.65 billion) Sydney waterfront resort in December 2020. ). The license is still suspended.

The investigation was initiated after a series of media reports appeared in 2019 accusing the company of knowingly collaborating with foreign tour operators linked to organized crime and turning a blind eye to money laundering.

Crown initially ran full-page advertisements in newspapers to refute the allegations, but admitted during hearings that they were largely true.

Crown, in a statement Thursday, acknowledged the recommendations of the Western Australian investigation and said it would “cooperate and work constructively with the Western Australian government” to meet them.

(1 dollar = 1.3348 Australian dollars)

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Reporting by Byron Kay; Editing by Christopher Cushing

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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