Asian casino firm, Suncity Group Holdings Limited, has reportedly released an official statement to refute recent claims that it is being investigated by authorities in Australia over alleged links between its controlling shareholder and Chinese organized crime syndicates.
According to a Monday report, the Hong Kong-listed firm’s apparently name came up late last week amid claims that Australia’s ongoing Targeting Criminal Wealth investigation was looking into the possibility that criminal gangs could be using junket services in the nation to illicitly launder money through casinos.
GGRAsia reported that Alvin Chau Cheok Wa (pictured) holds a significant stake in Suncity Group Holdings Limited while also serving as the boss for privately-held Macau junket firm, Suncity Group. Although investigators have not released any specific details regarding their alleged examination, the gossip mill purportedly went into overdrive after claims emerged that the billionaire businessman had recently been refused entry to Australia.
In responding to the considerable buzz that this rumor created, Suncity Group Holdings Limited reportedly used a Monday filing to detail that neither it nor Chau were being investigated by authorities in Australia and that the entrepreneur has no plans to travel to the country in the next twelve months.
Reportedly read the filing from Suncity…
“The board of Suncity Group Holdings Limited noticed certain media articles recently published in relation to Alvin Chau Cheok Wa in relation to, among others, investigation of certain Australian casinos. He is not aware of the said investigation of such Australian casinos. Mr Chau clarifies that he is not subject to any Australian investigation as at the date of this announcement. The listed company would like to clarify that [Suncity Group Holdings Limited together with its subsidiaries] has no business operations in Australia.”
However, the junket-operating Suncity Group is responsible for 14 high-roller clubs run via casinos in numerous jurisdictions including the Philippines, South Korea, Cambodia, Vietnam and Australia. It purportedly cited local newspapers as detailing that this portfolio encompasses a VIP lounge inside Crown Resorts Limited’s giant Crown Melbourne complex and that this operation was being investigated over allegations that it may be helping high-value Chinese individuals to launder money.