James Packer’s Crown ‘unfit’ to run Barangaroo casino, inquiry hears
James Packer’s Crown ‘unfit’ to run Barangaroo casino, inquiry hears

Packer’s Crown ‘unfit’ to run new casino: Inquiry

Billionaire gaming mogul James Packer's Crown casino is "unfit" to operate a new casino at Barangaroo, the public inquiry into the licence has been told today.

Counsel assisting the NSW Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority's inquiry Adam Bell has said the damaging influence of Mr Packer was one of the key reasons for its unsuitability.

James Packer appearing before the inquiry earlier this month.
James Packer appearing before the inquiry earlier this month.

The public inquiry is to rule on whether Crown's new $2.2 billion Barangaroo casino, which is due to open in December in the Sydney CBD, is suitable to hold a licence amid allegations of money-laundering and junket operators linked to organised crime.

"A common theme relating to the China arrests … is the deleterious impact on the good governance of Crown resorts caused by its dominant shareholder, CPH and ultimately Mr Packer," Mr Bell said.

"It is submitted that the impact of that influence has put Crown in breach of its regulatory agreements.

Construction of Crown Casino at Barangaroo. Picture: Gordon McComiskie
Construction of Crown Casino at Barangaroo. Picture: Gordon McComiskie

"We submit that the evidence presented to this inquiry demonstrates that the licensee is not a suitable person to continue to give effect to the licence and that Crown Resorts is not a suitable person to be a close associate of the licensee."

Mr Packer gave evidence last month via video link from his luxury yacht in the South Pacific.

During that evidence he admitted making "shameful" threats to a potential buyer of Crown Resorts and revealed he was being treated for bipolar disorder while giving bombshell evidence at a government inquiry.

The gaming mogul, 53, also told the inquiry that he has taken medication which impaired his ability to remember events while he was director of the company.

Originally published as Packer's Crown 'unfit' to run new casino: Inquiry


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