Australian casino operator Crown Resorts Limited is in the news again this week following reports that a Chinese-Australian high-roller, Dan Bai Shun Jin, is currently under investigation by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Internal Revenue Service in the United States over allegations he engaged in illegal money laundering transactions at casinos in the US, Macau, Australia and Singapore.
Appeal from Wife to Keep a $2.7 Million Property was Unsuccessful
On appeal to the Victorian Supreme Court, Jin’s wife, Hongjie Ma, asked the judge to lift the restraining order on a US$1.7 million California property, which was purchased using funds transferred from a Crown-owned casino to a bank account jointly held by Mr Jin and his wife. The seized property is now said to be worth US$2.7 million. However, the appeal was unsuccessful, as the Supreme Court deemed the property had been purchased with laundered money. This property along with two others were seized back in 2013 as part of the ongoing investigation into Mr Jin ‘s alleged money laundering activities.
Mr Jin Suspected of Large Scale Money Laundering at Crown Casinos
According to this Calvin Ayre article, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) launched an investigation into allegations of illegal money laundering after it was discovered there were “vast discrepancies between Jin’s known income and his profligate gambling activity,” in what could be described as “astronomical” levels of gambling estimated at A$855 million (US$640.7 million) at Crown casinos in a 8-year period between 2005 and 2013.
Mr Jin claimed to earn an annual base salary of US$300,000 with bonuses, but no documents supplied by his wife could support it, in a court judgement. In the court proceedings it was also revealed that Mr Jin had used multiple documents for proof of his identity, including six Australian passports.
Like most casino operators, Crown Resorts is marketed to attract wealthy Asian high-rollers, but it hasn’t been without its challenges. In 2014, an investigation by The Age accused Packer’s Crown Resorts of extending credit to local punters in violation of the Casino Control Act 1991. That same year, a high-stakes Asian gambler who turned over $90 million at Australian casinos was shot dead on a Sydney street corner whilst under investigation for money laundering.