The same lawyer who has helped tear down Crown Resorts in New South Wales (NSW), Adam Bell SC, has moved on to Star Sydney to determine whether the casino deserves to hold a gaming licence in the state.
If the casino’s owner, Star Entertainment Group, has been playing by the book, it has nothing to worry about. If not, Star Sydney has a lot to be concerned over.
Ever since Crown Resorts suffered its dramatic fall, the entire Australian casino industry has been under scrutiny, and financial and gaming regulators have decided to take a closer look at all casino operations in the country.
So, the NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA) has asked Adam Bell to dig deeper into Star Sydney operations and determine whether the casino should be allowed to retain its licence. Bell acted as the lead in taking down Crown Resorts and is seen as one of the people who brought about the company’s downfall.
The investigation is part of the new regulation that mandates that all casinos in NSW be reviewed every five years. However, we shouldn’t expect Bell to take the same path in this investigation.
Crown Resorts started to fall apart following the Bergin Report, named after Patricia Bergin, a supreme court judge who was part of the investigation. The state government approved all the recommendations found in the report, including stripping Crown of its licence and establishing new regulatory oversight in the future.
Consequently, the NSW government will hardly hesitate to accept the report concerning Star Sydney once Bell has conducted his investigation.
ILGA Chair, Philip Crawford, has said that Bell possesses all the necessary knowledge after the Bergin Report to conduct the Star Sydney investigation. He has added that Bell’s experience allows him to understand the casino industry, making him invaluable to the operation.
The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), Australia’s financial watchdog, has already hinted that Crown Resorts isn’t the only casino company that has been manipulating the rules. This claim has been enough for Bell to start his investigation.
Although investigations into Crown Resorts have been going on for quite a while in multiple states, it is expected that the one concerning Star Sydney in New South Wales won’t take long.
The public will get to see the results as early as next year, possibly in January.