Crown Resorts Introduces New Money Transfer Rules
As Crown Resorts awaits the outcome of several investigations, the company has decided to create new requirements for money transfers by gamblers.
For many years, Crown Resorts has been a top-rated casino operator. However, over the past few years, the company has come under severe scrutiny for several issues, including money laundering. The company is currently under investigation and its Victorian license is being threatened. It could be revoked due to compliance issues. To try and resolve matters now, Crown Resorts recently implemented new money transfer requirements for gamblers.
Crown Resorts will now accept funds from personal bank accounts only. Players will not be able to transfer funds via a business account or trust. This is an attempt, a late one I might add, by the operator to stop money laundering issues at its Perth and Melbourne locations.
A Little Too Late?
With the new rules, Crown will not be releasing cash deposits from its accounts to players. Individuals must provide a receipt to the company before funds will be placed into a private account. The goal of this change is to avoid money laundering issues, something the company has grappled with in the past.
Right now, the company is under investigation by the New South Wales Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority. Several breaches were found by the authority involving Crown Resorts, with a particular focus on the casino in Melbourne’s Southbank.
The inquiry found out that accounts had been shut down by the Commonwealth and ANZ banks after patrons used the accounts to complete suspicious cash transactions in the six figure range. The accounts were owned by two Crown shell companies. Gamblers would transfer funds to these accounts and then are given chips or credit to play at the casinos owned by the company.
Patrons used the Crown accounts to deposit funds in a private manner. The company names used on the accounts made it appear as if the money was used for something else other than gambling. While this privacy aspect was appealing to regular gamblers, it also was to criminals. People with nefarious intentions used the accounts to launder money from illegal activity.
Instituting the Changes
On December 24, Crown Resorts sent a letter to its members. In the letter, it detailed the money transfer changes and gave strict instructions on how funds would be transferred from now on. Crown says the changes are necessary to help the company meet its legal obligations.
To send funds to the Crown, gamblers will need to provide their rewards number and name. For international transfers, the individual will need to include the name of the bank or financial group involved in the transaction.
The description of the transfer must include that the funds will be used for gambling or to repay a debt. The funds will not be released by the Crown if the description is misleading.
To many analysts and gambling industry insiders, the change is a clear indication that the Crown Resorts is admitting to wrong doing in the past. Management of the casino operator recently admitted to failings when it comes to anti-money laundering processes. Officials told investigators recently about such shortcomings, stating new measures would be put in place to beef up protections.
There have been more than two months of public hearings taking place around the inquiry in New South Wales. The review uncovered several specific failings and shortcomings including being non-compliant with anti-money laundering laws.
For now, Crown has to hope that the change shows regulators and gaming authorities that they are serious about making changes. The inquiry in NSW will continue through February. The company’s Crown Sydney was allowed to open today but without gambling, due to the ongoing investigation.