SYDNEY, AAP – Star Entertainment’s top risk and legal manager will for a third day front a high-profile inquiry into the fitness of The Star Sydney to hold a casino licence.
The NSW gaming regulator inquiry into The Star last month prompted the resignation of Star CEO Matt Bekier, who stepped down following issues raised at the probe. It has also led to calls for a similar inquiry in Queensland.
The inquiry is proceeding up the gaming operator’s internal hierarchy, with Star top brass Mark Walker, Harry Theodore, Greg Hawkins and Mr Bekier also due to face the probe, helmed by Adam Bell SC.
Paula Martin, Star’s chief legal and risk officer, will resume in the witness stand on Wednesday morning after commencing her testimony late on Monday.
On Tuesday, Ms Martin was quizzed over a claim of legal professional privilege on an independent KPMG report produced in 2018 that was critical of the casino group’s anti-money laundering processes at the time.
She was also examined over her recollection of whether Mr Bekier was rude and aggressive in a meeting with KPMG delegates related to their independent report.
The witness was also grilled about her knowledge of the casino’s controversial practice of using Chinese debit cards to enable high rollers to purchase chips.
The inquiry has previously been told claims Star enabled money laundering at its international operations, disguised gaming transactions as hotel expenses, and allowed patrons to leave the casino with large numbers of gaming chips.
It has also been been told that Suncity – a group with alleged organised crime links – had an exclusive access deal over a VIP room known as Salon 95 at The Star where an illegal cage was operated.
The probe was sparked by media reports accusing Star of enabling suspected money laundering, organised crime, fraud and foreign interference at its gaming facilities, including The Star Sydney.