The Australian gaming group has brought an expert that led the investigation into its Chinese arrests scandal onto the payroll.
Australia.- Crown Resorts has added a new anti-money laundering adviser to its payroll, and it’s none other than the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission’s Melbourne operations manager, John Yates.
The appointment has caused some commotion in the law enforcement community since Yates oversaw the investigation into Crown’s high-roller operations following the 2016 arrest of Crown officials in China.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Yates led research into Crown’s association Suncity to fly Chinese VIPs to Crown casinos in Melbourne and Perth.
The New South Wales Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA) is currently investigating those activities in a public hearing, leading to some claims that Yates’ appointment could be seen as a conflict of interests or as interfering with proceedings.
Crown recently announced that it will stop junkets operations until next year in order to conduct a comprehensive review of its processes. The high-profile hire is thought to be intended as a very visible part of that transformation aimed at retaining the casino licence for its AU$2.4 billion Barangaroo property currently under construction.
Yates is prevented under criminal laws from using in his new position any information he gained while working for the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission.
Some observers have commented that the hiring of high-profile law enforcement and security agents is not uncommon in the gambling industry, as large players can often offer higher wages than government agencies.