Star casino fined $100M AUD for money laundering

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The Star Entertainment Group, an Australian-based gambling company, has been fined 100 million A$ ($62m, £55m). The fine was issued due to the company not failing to stop money laundering at its Sydney casino. Additional reports say that the group’s casino license has also been suspended.

Australian casino operators have been under pressure to reform their gambling operations amidst all the reports of criminal activity against casinos. Among the reported casinos, an inquiry against Star casino was held after hearing that Star have allowed money laundering and organized crime in their Sydney casino while deliberately hiding it.

The fine amount was the maximum allowed, but to protect the jobs of thousands of people, the regulator didn’t remove Star’s license completely and only suspended it under the condition that the casino will still operate under a new manager appointed by the regulator.

New South Wales (NSW) Independent Casino Commission chief Philip Crawford said, “From Friday, the Star will not be able to run the casino on its own until it can “earn” its license back.” The inquiry also led to the resignation of the former CEO “Matt Bekier” earlier this year, and the final report after an inquiry found Star did not fit to hold a casino license in NSW.

The Star Entertainment group said, “we have taken significant and urgent remedial steps and would do whatever necessary to restore its suitability to run the casino,” in response to the report. Stars have yet to respond about the penalties imposed after new CEO Robbie Cooke joined. Crawford said, “the Star’s “cultural issues” would take time to stamp out, but the company had shown signs it could reform under Mr. Cooke’s leadership.”

A similar inquiry in Queensland also occurred earlier this month, where Star was found unsuitable to run its three casinos in the state. Along with this, many other media allegations have surfaced with reports of misconduct by some of the largest gaming and entertainment groups “Crown Resorts” in Australia.

Crown Resorts was fined A$80 million by Victorian gambling authorities earlier this year for criminal activities.