Stronger Casino Penalties For South Australia

SA Gov

The Malinauskas Labor Government is moving to deliver stronger, nation-leading casino laws in the wake of unprecedented findings of misconduct by casino operators around Australia.

With unprecedented scrutiny of casino operations around the country – including adverse findings against casinos in four other states and civil action taken by regulator AUSTRAC against the operators of SkyCity Adelaide – the State Government has been undertaking a thorough review of the penalties applicable to the gambling operations of the Adelaide Casino, many of which haven’t been substantially changed since their introduction in 1997.

Under the Government’s proposed laws, the fines faced by the licensee will increase from the current maximum of $100,000 to up to $75 million when imposed through disciplinary action taken by the Liquor and Gambling Commissioner.

Provisions relating to disciplinary action will cover both past and future conduct, with measures in place to ensure the Commissioner takes into account penalties already imposed by a court when considering any additional penalties.

The maximum penalties for many criminal offences will also increase under the proposed laws such as offences for failing to keep proper financial accounts, evading the payment of casino duty and failure to take action specified in a compliance notice issued by the Liquor and Gambling Commissioner.

As put by Andrea Michaels

South Australia has a single casino licence holder and this is a privilege that should not be taken for granted.

The state’s casino licence comes with a range of significant responsibilities and, given many of the penalties for non-compliance have not been changed in more than 25 years, now is the right time to modernise these laws and ensure our penalties reflect their serious nature.

The penalties available to business operators cannot just be a slap on the wrist – or something that a multimillion-dollar business can simply disregard as an acceptable cost of doing business. These reforms will deliver what South Australians expect and ensure a greater level of accountability and responsibility in future.

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