Crown Resorts have confirmed that they have been notified by New South Wales’ gambling regulatory body about an investigation into its deal with Melco Resorts and Entertainment which was announced earlier this year.
Melco announced in May, that it would purchase a 19.99% stake in the Australian gambling operator at the price of $1.2 billion. The deal was yet to be materialized when the NSW Liquor and Gaming Authority announced an investigation into what it says “change in the state of affairs” of crown resorts.
The investigations are focused around the involvement of Melco’s former chairman Stanley Ho who is not allowed to do business with the Australian gambling operator.
Crown Resorts has said that they would cooperate with the officials in the investigation process and have denied any discrepancy and violation of underlying regulations.
In a statement with Reuters, Melco also said that they are up for an investigation and that there has been no involvement of Stanley Ho in the entire acquisition process and that he is not in the company’s board.
“(Stanley Ho) does not exercise any influence on any financial and operating policies or other matters of these companies,” the Melco representative said.
The gambling regulator had given its nod for the casino in 2014 on condition that Crown would not do business with Stanley Ho who at the time was under investigation in Australia and the United States for possible ties to organized crime.