- Legal States
Yasmin Moore October 13, 2022 3 min read
Judge Clears Up Allegations against Steve Wynn
On Wednesday, the casino tycoon Stephen A. “Steve” Wynn won his battle against the U.S. Department of Justice when a federal judge in Washington DC ruled that Wynn could not be required to register as a foreign agent.
DOJ Sought to Force Wynn to Register under FARA
In May, the Department of Justice filed a civil lawsuit against Wynn, the former chief executive officer of Wynn Casinos, seeking to force him to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). US Government officials accused Wynn of having lobbied former US President Donald Trump and members of his administration on behalf of senior Chinese government officials for several months in 2017.
Wynn Tried to Help Chinese Government Officials
Allegedly, Wynn aimed at expelling from the U.S. Guo Wengui, a Chinese billionaire real estate magnate, who had been accused of corrupt practices in China and tried to get political asylum in the U.S. Sun Lijun, the vice-minister of the Ministry of Public Security at that time, asked Wynn for help in trying to get denied the new US visa application of Wengui. However, the Chinese citizen did not return to China.
Per the Justice Department’s allegations, the casino tycoon had many conversations with Trump and visited the White House various times.
The attorneys of the defendant stated that Wynn had never been an agent of the Chinese government.
Boasberg Dismissed the Case
James Boasberg, U.S. district judge, stated that the casino magnate could not be obliged to register as a foreign agent under the FARA, because his relationship with the Chinese government ceased in 2017. Boasberg also added that he was not confirming or denying if Wynn had lobbied on behalf of Beijing. According to the judge’s statement, the Department of Justice could impose criminal sanctions against the casino mogul for his failure to disclose the alleged lobbying, if the statute of limitations had not expired.
A spokesperson of the U.S. Department of Justice stated that the said institution did not agree with the judge’s decision and would review its options.
On the other hand, Reid Weingarten and Robert Luskin, Wynn’s attorneys, denied that the casino magnate had lobbied Trump on behalf of China. They stated that this claim should never have been filed.
In 2018, Wynn, a donor of the U.S. Republican Party and former finance chair of the Republican National Committee, resigned as chief executive officer and chairman of Wynn Resorts amid multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, including harassment, coercion, and assault. Wynn denied all the accusations.