The Singapore Gambling Regulatory Authority (GRA) has fined Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) a total of S$2.3 million (£1.3 million/€1.6 million/US$1.7 million). imposed because the company failed to conduct customer due diligence.
The GRA said Resorts World Sentosa violated several Singapore laws by failing to carry out required checks. These include the Casino Control Act 2006 and the Casino Control (Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing) Regulations 2009.
According to the GRA, the case dates back to 2022, when RWS and Marina Bay Sands, another casino operator, were ordered to conduct a review of the activities of certain customers. RWS discovered violations in some transactions and reported them to GRA.
The regulator then conducted further investigations and found that RWS had failed to carry out required customer due diligence checks between December 2016 and December 2019. These were related to RWS collecting $5,000 or more in cash from third parties to deposit into RWS customer accounts.
GRA said RWS failed to establish the identities of all third-party depositors. The regulator also said RWS did not collect required identifying information or verify identities using reliable and independent sources, as required by PMLTF regulations.
Resorts World Sentosa is criticized for “systematic” errors
While GRA said RWS had a PMLTF framework and controls in place, it found “systematic” failures in certain controls. This, the regulator added, resulted in the violations not being detected.
GRA confirmed that RWS took immediate action to improve its processes as soon as the breaches were identified. In addition, the company engaged an independent party to review its operations and review its corporate culture with the aim of strengthening internal controls and corporate governance.
However, GRA continued to impose fines totaling nearly S$2.3 million. The regulator has also revoked the special employee license of one of the employees involved in the violations and is conducting further investigations to determine the culpability of the other special employees involved.
“GRA takes such lapses seriously and will not hesitate to take disciplinary action against erring casino operators,” a spokesperson said. “GRA will continue to closely monitor operators’ compliance with our legal requirements.”
Singapore police seize S$2.4 million worth of illegal gambling assets
The news comes after Singapore Police seized over S$2.40 billion worth of assets in September as part of an illegal online gambling investigation.
Singapore Police said the case involved a group of foreign nationals. They are suspected of having laundered the proceeds of organized crime abroad. Activities include fraud and online gambling.
Assets seized include bank accounts with an estimated total value of more than $1.13 billion and cash in excess of $76.0 million. Police also confiscated gold bars, luxury bags and watches, jewelry and electronic devices. Additionally, over $38.0 million worth of cryptocurrencies were seized.