Lawyers for Steve Wynn, founder of the United States-based casino group that still bears his surname, say he should not be subjected to disciplinary action by Nevada gaming regulators in connection with allegations of sexual misconduct against some female members of staff, because he severed connections with Wynn Resorts Ltd in 2018.
Mr Wynn (pictured), who has denied the allegations of sexual impropriety, had been given notice in an October complaint filed by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, lodged with the Nevada Gaming Commission, that he faced the possibility of a fine as well as the loss of his “suitability” status and therefore his gaming licence
The entrepreneur has now presented a motion to dismiss the five complaint matters lodged against him.
A filing from attorneys for Mr Wynn – cited by multiple media outlets – said that the Control Board “purports to exercise continuing jurisdiction over him through a so-called Nevada Gaming Control Board ‘administrative hold’ on his ‘findings of suitability’.”
The Nevada Gaming Control Board considers that Nevada regulators still maintain jurisdiction over Mr Wynn because the body had placed an administrative hold on his licence. The Control Board considers that therefore Mr Wynn is still subject to regulatory scrutiny.
But the motion to dismiss added: “Notably, however, the Nevada Gaming Control Board does not cite any statute or regulation providing for the imposition of an ‘administrative hold’ on a licensee or someone who has been found suitable to hold a position with a licensee.”
The document additionally stated: “The specific question presented is: Has the Nevada Legislature expressly or [by implication] authorised Nevada’s gaming regulators to discipline a person who no longer has any involvement with a Nevada gaming licensee and, thus, no longer poses an alleged threat to the industry or the public at large? We submit the answer to that question is a resounding ‘No’.”
The Control Board’s response to Mr Wynn’s motion to dismiss is due by November 27. A reply from Mr Wynn would be required by December 9, with a hearing on the matter 10 days later, on December 19.
Mr Wynn resigned from Wynn Resorts in February 2018 and sold all his shares in the company shortly afterwards.
Wynn Resorts is the parent of Macau casino operator Wynn Macau Ltd.
In February this year the Gaming Commission fined Wynn Resorts US$20 million over the sex misconduct matters and the way these issues had been handled internally by the company. A supporting report at the time by the Gaming Commission said that Mr Wynn had reached in 2005 a “private, confidential settlement” with a person referred to as “Employee 1”, in which she and her husband were paid US$7.5 million through a separate legal entity funded personally by Mr Wynn.
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