Perth Casino Royal Commission Wraps Crown Hearings

Crown Resorts is in a familiar position. It awaits the results of yet another investigation into its suitability to keep a gambling license for one of its properties. This time, it is Crown Perth, as the government of Western Australia wraps its Perth Casino Royal Commission. Most expect the final report within the next month.

Third Major Commission

The first and most influential commission was the initial one. That took place within New South Wales and resulted in the Bergin Report. The Victoria Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation was next with its Royal Commission report and recommendations.

The third happened in Western Australia. With Crown Perth located in WA, it was important for the Perth Casino Royal Commission to look at the facts and evidence for itself. The Honourable Nevill Owe, Honourable Lindy Jenkins, and Colin Murphy took control of the commission on 5 March 2021. They led the investigation into potential conflicts or interest, gaming regulations, and Crown Perth’s suitability to keep its casino license.

On 30 June 2021, the commission heads delivered the report to the governor and premier. It also went to the Parliament.

At the beginning of February 2022, the Perth Casino Royal Commission wrapped its hearings. Members of the commission will now compile their findings and develop recommendations, which will go to Western Australia’s Premier Mark McGowan and Governor Kim Beazley in the coming weeks. It may seem like a massive task, but they had estimated the report to be completed by 4 March 2022.

Interim Report Overview

The 145-page “Interim Report on the Regulatory Framework” from the Perth Casino Royal Commission is not a casual read. It started with more than a dozen pages about the methodology of the commission and thirty pages about the history of gambling-related legislation. From page 61, the report began identifying risks, responsibilities, and capability. Ultimately, that report analyzed the adequacy of the existing regulatory framework.

While the inquiry was not exceptionally broad, it was certainly not too narrow. It focused on two primary goals. First, they needed to decide if Crown Perth was suitability to maintain its license. Second, they had to look at the Gaming and Wagering Commission of Western Australia to determine its ability to do its job and to do it well.

Those are the goals of the inquiry as a whole, though. The interim report was only an update on their progress toward those goals.

Work Done by Interim

The reported indicated that the research and background had been done. From the history of gambling-related legislation and Crown Perth, they gained a broader understanding of the current regulatory framework. In addition, the commission examined other jurisdictions for reference.

The Perth Casino Royal Commission also did a detailed analysis of the Bergin Report from NSW. Not only is that an important point of reference, it included some information about gaming operations at Crown Perth.

The commission began its public hearings on 12 April 2021 with the opening statement and heard applications from interested parties eight days later. They then granted applications to Crown Resorts and its subsidiaries relevant to Perth, current and former Crown directors, and Western Australia’s Gaming and Wagering Commission members.

In addition, the commission welcomed public submissions from interested parties. They received 52 emails during that April-May submission period.

What to Expect from Final Report

There will likely be numerous recommendations in the final report, aimed at everyone from the casino itself to Crown Resorts and the WA regulator. Specifically, as deemed necessary by the initial commission directive, the report should:

  • Determine if Crown Perth is suitable to continue to hold a casino gaming license.
  • Determine if Crown Resorts and Burswood Resort Management are suitable to conduct the gaming operations of a licensed casino.
  • If not, detail what changes could enable suitability.
  • Grade communications by Crown Perth to the WA Gaming and Wagering Commission.
  • Rate the existing regulatory framework for all casinos and gaming in WA, including junket operations, money laundering, cash and electronic transactions, and risks of criminal infiltrations.
  • Determine if the Gaming and Wagering Commission properly exercised its powers and responsibilities.
  • Analyze the capability and effectiveness of the Gaming and Wagering Commission.
  • Detail information that could enhance the Gaming and Wagering Commission’s regulatory functions in the future, including potential legislative or structural reforms.

After 59 days of hearings from 70 witnesses, the commission needs to pull it together in a comprehensive report and determine the future of Crown Perth.

 

 

Rose Varrelli avatar
Rose Varrelli
Senior Casino & News Writer

Hi there! I’m Rose, and with nine years behind me in the iGaming industry, I craft engaging narratives at CasinoAus. My education in Communication across Europe has sharpened my skills in fintech, casino legislation, and digital marketing. Backed by a strong foundation in SEO, storytelling, and cross-cultural communication, I’m passionate about creating content that resonates globally and educates our audience.

Subscribe For Exclusive Offers And Content!

Sign up for exclusive content: casino bonus offers, articles, eBooks, and the latest news. Now directly in your inbox!