Crown Casino 'tampered with poker machines'


Crown Casino 'tampered with poker machines'

Shares in Crown Resorts have plunged after claims by whistleblowers were tabled in Federal Parliament alleging the casinos operator deliberately tampered with poker machines to increase losses.

"Crown can not be allowed to operate pokie machines until an independent audit has been completed", state Green MP Colleen Hartland said.

And now in the wake of the allegations, the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation told Fairfax they would be launching an inquiry.

A lawmaker on Wednesday accused a major Australian casino company of rigging slot machines and concealing potential money laundering at its largest casino with the state regulator covering up criminal behavior.

In denying the allegations, Crown called on Mr Wilkie to "immediately provide to the relevant authorities all information relating to the matters alleged".

Because Willkie made the allegations under parliamentary privilege, he can not be sued for defamation.

A short time ago, the shares were down 4.9% to $11.175.

The anonymous whistleblowers allege lower betting options were disabled on machines and buttons modified to allow autoplay - which is banned.

"According to the whistle-blowers, in some cases the commission is clearly complicit in covering it up", he added.

On top of that, they claim the casino avoids scrutiny by the money movement watchdog Austrac of people involved in transactions over $10,000 by tolerating and "even encouraging" the misuse of identity documents.

He said Parliament and Victorian and Federal law authorities had to take the allegations seriously. In June, a Chinese court sentenced 16 Australian and Chinese Crown employees to nine to 10 months in prison after they pleaded guilty to charges related to organizing gambling tours to Australia.

On the recording, unidentified people whose faces were heavily pixelated accuse Crown's casino in Melbourne of fixing poker machines by removing built-in controls created to regulate gambling rates. One describes himself as a technician and another as a gaming attendant.

Mr McCarthy said the allegations are untested, but if they are true, they would have implications not just for Crown's Melbourne operations but also for Crown's casino operations in the rest of Australia and around the world.

Wilkie told reporters that the three former employees had spoken to him in recent months on condition that he did not reveal their identities.