The Singapore Gambling Regulatory Authority (GRA) has imposed a fine of S$2.25 million ($1.66M) on Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) for failing to conduct the necessary due diligence checks on deposits into customers’ accounts. These checks are a requirement under the Casino Control Act and the Casino Control Regulations (Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing), the GRA said on Friday.
Additionally, the GRA revoked the special employee license of a RWS staff member associated with this incident. The license is issued by the GRA for employees in key positions in casinos or who make decisions about casino operations.
The case began in 2020 when the GRA directed RWS and Marina Bay Sands, another casino operator, to review the activities of specific customers. During this review, RWS identified non-compliant transactions and notified the GRA.
The GRA’s investigation found that, between December 2016 and December 2019, RWS did not perform the necessary checks on certain transactions, where employees collected S$5,000 or more in cash from third parties to deposit into the accounts of its patrons.
The GRA pointed out that RWS did not establish the identity of the third-party depositors, did not record the necessary identification information, nor verified these identities using reliable and independent sources, as required. In addition to revoking the license of one employee, the GRA is investigating other staff with similar licenses who were involved.
In a statement, the authority said that it will continue supervising the matter: “GRA takes a serious view of such lapses and will not hesitate to take disciplinary action against errant casino operators. GRA will continue to exercise tight supervision over the operators’ compliance with our regulatory requirements.”
Following the identification of lapses, RWS began a review of its standard operating procedures with an independent third party and assessed its corporate culture, aiming to improve its internal controls and corporate governance.