Australia – Stanley Ho persona non grata with CrownBy Lewis - 14 November 2014
A request by Australian MP, John Kaye, to make public documents relating to the James Packer’s Crown Resorts’ licence application for the Barangaroo casino project, has revealed that to secure the licence Mr. Packer had to agree not to “associate with organised crime figure Stanley Ho.” Crown had to explicitly agree to have nothing to do with Mr. Ho in order to secure the licence for his casino at Barangaroo from the state government and liquor and gaming regulatory authorities.
Despite this caveat, Mr Packer is in business with Mr Ho’s son Lawrence in Macau and Philippines through the business Melco Crown, though Crown has made it clear that there is no business connection between Lawrence Ho and his father.
“To the extent to which it is within its power to do so, Crown will ensure that it prevents any new business activities or transactions of a material nature between Stanley Huang Sun Ho or a Stanley Ho associate and Crown, any of Crown’s offices directors or employees or any Crown subsidiary,” the agreement states. Crown also agreed to prevent “Stanley Huang Sun Ho or a Stanley Ho associate from acquiring any direct or beneficial interest in Crown, a subsidiary of Crown, Melco Crown or a subsidiary of Melco Crown.”
“Stanley Ho has been accused by US regulators of connections to Chinese organised crime triads, strong ties to North Korea and involvement in money laundering activities,” Mr Kaye said. “The provisions that have been hidden from the NSW public supposedly erect a barrier between this state and the corrupt practices in casinos like Macau.”
Mr Ho has long denied any wrongdoing or association with triads.