Star kept NAB in dark over suspect costs

National Australia Bank staff didn’t check if Star casino was allowing guests to bill gambling spending as hotel expenses, despite financial clients sounding the alarm, an inquiry has heard.

9 years ago

Friday’s hearings of the Bell inquiry into the Sydney casino heard of Star’s efforts to keep NAB and China Union Pay in the dark about the practice.

At the same time a former Star executive suggested NAB knew the suspect expenses were linked to gambling

The NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority inquiry heard on Thursday Star disguised $900 million in transactions from CUP as hotel expenses to help high rollers dodge China’s tight anti-gambling and capital flight laws.

Concerns from China’s central back forced CUP to request NAB – who represented the Chinese financial services group – to ask Star if their services were being used for situs togel v88 gambling.

“I did not ask (Star staff) outright,” NAB’s Tanya Arthur said on Friday.Ms Arthur was managing the Star account.

“We were asking (Star) staff to substantiate a number of transactions … and I believed the answers being provided to me at the time.”

Star told NAB the transactions made via China Union Pay cards at the casino were being used at the resort or v88toto togel on external services like travel, jewellery and cars.

Star’s former group treasurer Sarah Scopel told the inquiry about a meeting with her, the casino’s chief financial officer Harry Theodore and NAB’s Ms Arthur.

Ms Scopel said on Friday the CFO told Ms Arthur the casino couldn’t guarantee the transactions weren’t being used to fund gambling.

Ms Arthur allegedly responded, “Yes, yes, I know”.

“My impression was that Ms Arthur, and NAB generally, were aware of the difficulty in providing the non-gaming confirmations,” Ms Scopel said.

“And were aware of the connection to gaming and were comfortable with the intended approach to the response (to concerns raised by CUP).”

Ms Arthur said she couldn’t recall that meeting but did not deny it could have happened.

Star’s Ms Scopel admitted the casino misled NAB when it said the CUP transactions were not gambling-related.

But despite being uncomfortable with what the casino was saying, v88toto Ms Scopel didn’t believe she was in a position to challenge her bosses who were telling her how to respond.

“It could impact my employment,” Ms Scopel said.

Ms Arthur is due back in the witness box on Monday.

The inquiry is investigating whether The Star Sydney was infiltrated by criminal activity such as money laundering, slot online and whether it is fit to keep its casino licence.

It was sparked by media reports accusing The Star’s owner, casino giant Star Entertainment, of enabling suspected money laundering, organised crime, fraud and foreign interference at its gaming facilities.

Among witnesses scheduled to appear next week is the Chinese billionaire property developer Phillip Dong Fang Lee, who was reportedly a high roller at the casino.

Star Entertainment says it has an unwavering focus on preventing criminal activity at its casinos, which also include The Star Gold Coast and Treasury Brisbane.

Its larger rival, Crown Resorts, v88toto togel has also faced misconduct inquiries, which found criminals were taking advantage of its casinos, biojudi prompting two royal commissions and the resignation of most of its board.