June 16, 2023 3 min read


Crown Resorts Slapped with $14M Fine for Tax Obligation Breach

The fine comes as a result of the company's breach of tax obligations and improper claiming of tax deductions

Crown Resorts, one of Australia’s leading casino operators, has been hit with a substantial fine of AUD20 million ($13.8 million) by the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC). The issue was initially uncovered during the 2021 Royal Commission probe into Crown Melbourne, which revealed that Crown had disguised promotional costs as winnings in order to claim tax deductions.

Crown Resorts Concealed Tax Failings, VGCCC Discovers

The VGCCC discovered the tax failings among the extensive documents disclosed by Crown during the Royal Commission probe, reported The Sydney Morning Herald. The commission also found that Crown had deliberately concealed the nature of these deductions.

Crown Melbourne, the flagship casino of the company, has accepted its wrongdoing and has paid approximately AUD61.5 million ($42.4 million) to the state of Victoria. This amount includes unpaid casino tax of about AUD37.4 million ($25.7 million) and penalty interest of approximately AUD24.1 million ($16.6 million). The AUD20 million fine imposed by the VGCCC is in addition to these payments.

Fran Thorn, the chairperson of the VGCCC, stated that Crown’s breach of its tax obligations and its efforts to conceal the improper deductions were unacceptable. Thorn emphasized the importance of gaming licensees complying with their tax obligations and maintaining transparency in their dealings with regulators. As a result of Crown’s actions, the VGCCC has imposed a significant fine to send a strong message that such behavior will face severe disciplinary action.

Crown Resorts’ Chief Vows Cultural Overhaul

Crown Melbourne’s chief, Mike Volkert, expressed the company’s acceptance of the outcome and its commitment to a cultural overhaul under new ownership. Crown Resorts was acquired by Blackstone Capital for AUD8.9 billion ($6.1 billion) in May of last year. Volkert assured regulators and stakeholders of Crown’s dedication to open and transparent relationships, improved internal controls, and regulatory reporting requirements.

This is not the first time Crown has faced substantial penalties. Earlier this year, the company and the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) proposed an AUD450 million ($309.8 million) penalty for extensive anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism failings at Crown Perth and Crown Melbourne. If approved, this penalty would be one of the largest in Australian corporate history.

Crown Resorts has been under scrutiny since 2019 when an investigation revealed its vulnerability to international criminal syndicates and money launderers. Subsequent government inquiries have deemed the company unfit to hold a casino license, preventing the opening of its high-rise casino at Sydney’s Barangaroo. The ongoing legal and regulatory challenges have forced Crown to reevaluate its practices and work towards regaining trust and compliance with industry standards.


Silvia has dabbled in all sorts of writing – from content writing for social media to movie scripts. She has a Bachelor's in Screenwriting and experience in marketing and producing documentary films. With her background as a customer support agent within the gambling industry, she brings valuable insight to the Gambling News writers’ team.

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