Star Entertainment Group has been hit with a huge second fine, this time by the Queensland government, and its casino licenses could be forfeited. [Image: Shutterstock.com]
Star Entertainment fined again
The Queensland government has fined Australian company Star Entertainment Group A$100 million ($67.92 million) after an investigation revealed irregularities in compliance standards.
The main failures of the Star Group and its entities “
Responses to a show-cause notice last month exposed “significant failures by the Star Group and its entities”, according to a statement from the Queensland government. The fine was applied to demonstrate the intolerance of the company’s behaviour.
Star Entertainment was also fined A$100 million ($67.92 million) and had its casino licenses suspended by the New South Wales government, prompting an investigation in Queensland. It’s a devastating blow for a company whose share price is now down 14.02% this month and 32.85% year over year.
Starr was found guilty of multiple breaches of compliance with Australian law and its licensing standards. It was deemed inappropriate to continue holding both casino licenses a few months earlier, but was allowed to continue due to a late change in casino laws.
Allowing “excluded people” was one of the most egregious behaviors [at] Their casinos offer exorbitant incentives[ed] For questionable gamblers.”
Special Director to oversee reform of Star practices and standards
State Attorney General Shannon Fentiman said Nick Weeks has been appointed as the special director to oversee reform of Starr’s practices and standards. Weeks was also selected by the New South Wales government to perform similar duties in casinos in the state of South East Australia.
Star has been threatened with a 90-day suspension of its casino license in Queensland if it cannot enact new practices under Weeks by December 2023. It could also face additional fines if it fails to implement appropriate standards.
“These penalties were considered very carefully following the results prosecuted from [investigation] In addition to looking at Starr’s responses as part of the show’s case process,” Fentiman said. “What we’ve seen come out of [investigation] That focus was on profits, where they didn’t really fuel their anti-money laundering policies.”
Star and the entire Australian gambling scene are in the middle of turbulent times. Star is already dealing with a lawsuit brought by the Australian Transaction Reporting and Analysis Center (AUSTRAC), the government body responsible for monitoring the movement of funds.
AUSTRAC says Star allowed casino customers to transfer money through unregulated, risky, and even nefarious channels. It also alleged that Star Sydney and Star Queensland committed 1,514 offences, each punishable by up to $18m – $22.2m, since November 2016.
Those are just two of the problems Star faces getting back to regular operations. The Queensland government, Wicks, and others hope to be able to clean up the company’s operations without suspending casino licences, though that remains an option.
“If The Star makes satisfactory progress toward correcting these issues, the Special Director and I may decide to postpone or cancel [possible] “Licenses are suspended,” Fentiman said.