Today, a report into the dodgy dealings of Australia’s most notorious casino was tabled in the NSW parliament, and the evidence was damning.
For years, Crown casinos have been the centre of accusations of poor or misleading practice. Today, we discovered the extent to which this gross misconduct happened under multiple governments’ watch. The report found:
“poor corporate governance, deficient risk management structures and processes and a poor corporate culture”
But here’s the kicker
Crown's unsuitability stemmed from evidence of money laundering at its Melbourne and Perth casinos - yet it took a NSW inquiry to get to the bottom of this gross malpractice.
Finally, a regulator has taken action against one of Australia’s worst gambling operators. But there’s no reason to believe the rest of the gambling industry is any better.
The actions of suburban “casinos” in every state except WA, with thousands of poker machines and the unconscionable behaviour of online bookmakers calls for an overhaul of the gambling industry as a whole.
Crown just the tip of the iceberg
The recommendation for a truly Independent Commission, which can overrule any deal a government makes, is well overdue in all states and territories.
But money laundering loomed large in this decision, and on this, the report is clear - a card-only gambling system would solve the problem, and is needed not just in casinos, but in all gambling venues.
“it appears that the very significant utility of the card to assist the problem gambler could not be in issue. It is also obvious that it would be a powerful mechanism to assist in combating money-laundering”
These explosive findings only underscore the need for better transparency and accountability, and that’s why our campaign for self-exclusion measures that actually work, including a universal cashless card, is so important.
How did we get here?
In November, Crown explosively admitted to the money laundering that had been the subject of media spotlight in 2019.
Missing in action are the regulators and governments of Crown operations in other states. The WA Government has remained remarkably silent, while Victoria has belatedly brought forward its scheduled review.