Delay in NSW Star Entertainment inquiry

The inquiry is scheduled to continue until August 31.
The inquiry is scheduled to continue until August 31.

Star Entertainment executive chairman John O’Neil was to appear at the inquiry today but the hearing has been adjourned.

Australia.- Star Entertainment Group executive chairman John O’Neil was due to give testimony today (Monday) to the New South Wales inquiry into the company’s fitness to keep its Sydney casino licence. However, the hearing has been adjourned until May 23 without explanation.

A NSW Department of Enterprise Investment and Trade spokesperson simply said the hearing has been “delayed”, according to the Australian Associated Press.

The inquiry has so far heard from Star’s chief executive Matt Bekier, chief financial officer Harry Theodore, chief casino officer Greg Hawkins, and chief legal and risk officer Paula Martin. O’Neill, who was appointed interim executive chairman last month after Bekier’s resignation, was the last name on the list.

In the latest testimonies, Star director Ben Heap, was accused of having misled shareholders regarding accusations about the company’s links to organised crime.

Counsel assisting the inquiry Casper Conde asked Heap if he had misled the company’s shareholders. Heap denied that and said the media had sensationalized the accusations and that their claims did not adequately reflect how Star Entertainment considered the situation.

Meanwhile, Star Entertainment Group has announced it has suspended rebate programmes for both domestic and international players across all its casinos until further notice. It said it has hired external advisors and continues a programme of work on its systems and processes while cooperating with the review.  

Directors Sally Pitkin and Gerard Bradley have announced their intention to step down from Star’s board amid the inquiry, which is now scheduled to go on until August 31.

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