Australian Crown Resorts Employees Released from Chinese Jail

By Brian Cullingworth, Last updated Aug 18, 2017

Aussie Crown Execs Set For Release Saturday (Update)

But O’Connor and others will immediately be deported

It’s been 10 months of anxiety and stress in Chinese jails for Australian Crown Resorts VIP marketing exec Jason O’Connor and four other Crown employees arrested for promoting gambling in China last year (see previous InfoPowa reports), but on Saturday it will all be over bar deportation formalities, according to a report in the Australian Financial Review.

For O’Connor’s company it’s been an expensive lesson that promoting to high roller Chinese gamblers is not tolerated by the Chinese authorities, who have clearly been closely monitoring the activities of foreign gambling groups on Chinese soil.

Crown reportedly paid A$1.7 million a head in fines to get its people out after filing guilty pleas.

The AFR claims that during 2016 alone Chinese whales spent A$875 million in Crown casinos, and after the Chinese push-back the gambling group saw its VIP turnover to June 30 this year take a 49 percent hit.

InfoPowa readers may recall that O’Connor and over a dozen Crown employees – several of them Australian or Malaysian nationals – were detained in a Chinese police swoop last year, accused of promoting gambling, although the charges took some time to emerge.

Aussies Among Those Released From Chinese Jail (Update)

Early morning deportation for Jason O’Connor

Reports Friday that Australian VIP marketing exec Jason O’Connor would be among those released from jail by the Chinese authorities were confirmed Saturday when Chinese officials revealed that O’Connor had been released early Saturday morning and immediately taken to the airport for deportation back to Australia.

Crown’s sales chief in China, Alfred Gomez, was also reportedly released.

InfoPowa readers will recall that O’Connor was among 16 Crown Resorts staffers both locally based and from Australia who were detained for promoting gambling in October last year.

Melbourne-based O’Connor was also sentenced to a fine of RMB2 million, or $A390,000,

Ten of those arrested, including Aussie nationals Jerry Xuan and Jane Pan Dan, were released in July.

Brian Cullingworth

Infopowa news was a staple of Casinomeister’s news from 2000 until 2019. Brian Cullingworth was the main writer, contributor, and was one of the most knowledgeable persons I have ever known involved in the online casino industry.

We first met in January 2001 at the ICE in London where I observed him going booth to booth interviewing online casino, software, and licensing jurisdiction representatives. Brian was also heavily involved with our forum as “Jetset“, he was involved as an informal consultant to eCOGRA, the OPA, and was a player advocate who assisted countless aggrieved players with his connections to industry folks. He also published “Casino Cautions” via Infopowa news for quite a number of years. These can be found in our news archives.

His passing in February 2019 was a dark day for us. He will be forever missed.

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