The strict conditions are already imposed on Crown as part of its conditional licence to operate at Barangaroo with the state government to introduce legislation in August for it to apply to all casinos. The Star is the only other casino licence holder in NSW.
The new laws will also mirror the strict ban on junket operators also imposed on Crown.
Crown was given approval on Wednesday to open gaming operations at its waterfront tower, conditional on control measures to address governance and anti-money laundering risks. The licence will be reviewed at the end of 2023.
Under the new legislation, a NSW Independent Casino Commission will be established with enhanced compliance and enforcement powers. The dedicated regulator will be led by a chief commissioner, with up to four additional commissioners, including at least one with anti-money laundering expertise.
Currently, oversight of casino operations in NSW is the responsibility of the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority which reviews licences for all gaming and liquor venues in the state.
Casinos will also be obliged to submit suspicious activity reports to both AUSTRAC and the commission.
Minister for Hospitality and Racing Kevin Anderson said the government was rebuilding the rules for casinos with stringent new controls.
“The commission will be given extensive new compliance and enforcement powers to prevent money laundering and other criminal activity in NSW casinos,” he said.
“These will include a significant increase in fines, new powers to revoke and cancel casino licenses and liability for company directors.“
Anderson said that the reforms would meet the government’s commitment to supporting all 19 recommendations of the damning Bergin inquiry into Crown Resorts.
The probe last year by former Supreme Court judge Patricia Bergin found Crown unfit to hold a casino licence at Barangaroo and urged NSW to set up an independent body to oversee casinos.
Bergin said a “dedicated, stand-alone, specialist casino regulator” was needed to address the extent and emerging risks for gaming and casinos.
The recent Bell inquiry into The Star Entertainment Group’s Pyrmont casino has heard similarly damning claims of misleading conduct, a failure to manage anti-money laundering risks and wilful blindness to criminal links of VIP junkets.
The inquiry, which will report back in August, heard evidence Star disguised $900 million worth of Chinese debit card gambling transactions as hotel expenses. It then lied to banks in an attempt to conceal the massive fraud.
It also heard allegations Star gave free rein to major “junket” VIP tour partners and disregarded anti-money laundering procedures to avoid China’s strict capital flight and anti-gambling laws have also been probed by the inquiry.
Adam Bell, SC, who is overseeing the inquiry, heard submissions Star showed a “disdain for the casino regulator”, and was not suitable to hold the privilege of a casino licence.
The conditional licence for Crown comes days before US private equity giant Blackstone takes over the group. It has yet to confirm when gambling operations will commence.
Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority chairman Phil Crawford said the opening date was a matter for Crown and its new owner.