SkyCity Adelaide (Question Time)

In Parliament, Questions

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (15:03): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking the Attorney-General a question about the independent investigation into SkyCity Adelaide.

Leave granted.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: In July 2022, it was announced that the Hon. Brian Martin AO QC had been appointed to conduct an investigation under section 22(2) of the Casino Act 1997 in regard to the suitability of SkyCity Adelaide to continue to hold the casino licence at the Adelaide Casino. This followed a separate investigation by AUSTRAC, who accused SkyCity of serious noncompliance related to money laundering and counterterrorism financing laws. AUSTRAC’s document states that SkyCity Adelaide was aware of information suggesting that some of its customers were connected to organised crime, or that their source of funds might not have been legitimate.

The Liquor and Gambling Commissioner, Mr Dini Soulio, said that commissions of inquiry into casinos had been undertaken in New South Wales, Victoria and WA ,and a further inquiry was about to begin in Queensland. I quote him:

Inquiries to date have highlighted significant failings on the part of Crown Resorts as operators of Crown casinos.

In February 2023, Mr Martin advised the commissioner that it is not possible to reliably determine the question of suitability under the resolution of proceedings by AUSTRAC, and consequently placed the investigation on hold. On 7 February 2023, the commissioner advised, by media release from the Attorney’s own department, that further information would be made public as soon as possible. That is now a month ago. My questions to the Attorney are:

1. Can he please advise any progress made on this independent investigation?

2. When will this further information be advised to the community, some one month on?

3. Does the Malinauskas government have confidence in SkyCity’s capability to hold the licence at the Adelaide Casino?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Attorney-General, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (15:05): I thank the honourable member for her questions and her ongoing interest in this area. I will have to take that on notice, but I will bring back a reply as soon as I can. The area of the Attorney-General’s Department that deals with consumer and business affairs that includes liquor and gambling, and the Liquor and Gambling Commissioner, sits under the portfolio area of the Hon. Andrea Michaels, the member for Enfield and Minister for Consumer and Business Affairs in another place.

As happens, sometimes there are areas of a department that report to different ministers. That one reports to, as I said, the Minister for Consumer and Business Affairs, but I will refer that to the honourable member in another place and bring back a reply in relation to the important question she has asked today.