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More sanctions must follow $80m Crown fine - Record penalty ‘absolutely appropriate’

30 May 2022

The record $80m fine imposed on Crown Casino was absolutely appropriate and should be followed by other sanctions in response to the appalling revelations that emerged out of the Royal Commission.

The chief advocate of the Alliance for Gambling Reform, Rev. Tim Costello, said the fine reflected the stronger legislative powers rightly granted the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC).

“Finally we have a watchdog with some teeth, the stronger legislative powers given to the VGCCC should be applauded. This fine is a vindication of strengthening its powers,” Rev. Costello said.
“It means Victorians can at last receive some protection from the Crown-enabling organised crime activities that the casino has been shown to undertake with near impunity for years.”
“The state capture of the regulator over many years has meant Crown has effectively done what it likes with only the prospect of a pitiful $1m fine as punishment.”

The maximum fine the regulator can impose now is $100 million. Until last year, it was only $1 million.

The Victorian Royal Commission into Crown found the casino guilty of ‘disgraceful conduct’ and recommended it be stripped of its license if it could not prove it had reformed itself by 2023.

The record $80 million fine was imposed on Crown for a scheme that allowed the illegal transfer of funds from China that was exposed by the Royal Commission.

It is estimated Crown derived revenue of more than $32 million from the scandal, which violated Chinese laws and Victoria's Casino Control Act.

The Alliance for Gambling Reform also welcomed the statement by the VGCCC that it was considering further disciplinary proceedings against Crown related to the other findings of the Royal Commission.

Media contact: Martin Thomas – 0477 340 704

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