crown melbourne
Crown is currently subject to an upcoming Royal Commission. Image – Canva.
  • The fine is the maximum the Commission can impose
  • Comes as licenses are under review in Victoria and WA
  • The company is also considering a takeover offer from a US private equity group

Crown Resorts (ASX: CWN) is no stranger to controversy in recent times. Along with failing to receive its casino operator licence for their brand new $2.2B Barangaroo tower, the company’s licenses in Victoria and Western Australia are now both under review.

The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) has announced a $1 million fine will be imposed on the casino operator for failing to scrutinise junket operators and vet foreign high rollers. Some of these operations are known to have links to organised crime.

The fine is the maximum penalty the commission can impose under the Casino Control Act 1991.

Ross Kennedy, the Chairman of the VCGLR, said though this is not the first time the commission has taken action against Crown, this is the first time they have been fined the maximum amount.

“That fine reflects the seriousness of this matter, and the fact that Crown’s failure to implement a robust process occurred over an extended period,” said Mr Kennedy.

“Robust processes must be implemented to ensure that Crown’s Melbourne casino remains free from criminal influence and exploitation.

“These are strict and legislated regulatory requirements, and this is an area where Crown has repeatedly failed.”

Ross Kennedy, VCGLR Chairman

The news comes as Crown’s board is considering a takeover offer from US private equity group Blackstone.

In a statement, the Commission added that this matter may be relevant to the upcoming Royal Commission and that it will continue to assist them with its inquiries.

While Crown has been provided with more information on the commission’s decision, these will not be published at this time due to its sensitive nature.

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