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Major Sydney Casino Opening Overshadowed by Investigations

Major Sydney Casino Opening Overshadowed by Investigations

SYDNEY—The petal-shaped skyscraper shimmering on the edge of the harbor not far from the Sydney Opera House is the centerpiece of the city’s most ambi

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SYDNEY—The petal-shaped skyscraper shimmering on the edge of the harbor not far from the Sydney Opera House is the centerpiece of the city’s most ambitious attempt at urban regeneration since the Olympics in 2000.

Just weeks from its December opening, however, the Australian company behind the $1.6 billion casino-resort development is embroiled in two inquiries, into alleged money laundering and its corporate conduct. Gambling authorities are examining Crown Resorts Ltd. ’s suitability to hold a license for the Sydney casino, and the company is cooperating with a separate probe by the country’s financial regulator, which has the power to impose fines and other penalties.

Crown denies any deliberate wrongdoing. The company said at its annual meeting last month that it will create a new compliance and financial-crimes department that will report directly to the board. Crown has suspended its activities with junket operators, who bring in VIP gamblers, the main factor in the initiation of the investigations.

This post first appeared on wsj.com

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