Australian casino operator The Star Entertainment Group Ltd said on Tuesday that it accepted the findings of the Bell Report, which found the company “unsuitable” to hold a casino licence in the state of New South Wales. The report was the result of an inquiry conducted by the New South Wales Independent Casino Commission (NICC).
The company operates The Star Sydney property (pictured) in that Australian state.
The Star Entertainment also acknowledged the “gravity of the conduct” that was raised in the Bell Report, but said it should be permitted to continue operating under “strict supervision”.
The firm said it had “developed a comprehensive remediation plan” to address “root-cause failings” mentioned in the inquiry report released earlier this month. It said the plan would focus on a “multi-year transformation” of governance, accountability, culture, and risk and compliance-management practices.
It added: “We intend to do whatever is necessary, in consultation with NICC, to restore The Star Sydney to suitability.”
“We submit that the appropriate action NICC should take is to allow The Star Entertainment to continue to operate the licence, under strict supervision and being held accountable to the milestones on the remediation plan,” stated the casino firm. “Achieving those milestones should give NICC confidence that The Star Entertainment has restored suitability.”
The casino operator plans to finalise the budget for the remediation plan “by the end of October” and conclude the plan by the end of 2024.
Australia’s casino sector has faced intense scrutiny over the last three years.
New South Wales had previously found another Australian casino operator – Crown Resorts Ltd – unsuitable for a casino licence at its new Crown Sydney property, because of alleged insufficient controls in its operations in other Australian states, against the risk of money laundering and criminal infiltration in operations.
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