Crown Resorts Limited is in a lot of trouble right now, from shareholder lawsuits to slot tampering allegations. Now, the founder of the Australian casino chain, James Packer, has decided to step down as director of the company. According to a spokesperson for Packer’s private investment company, Consolidated Press Holdings, Packer is ‘suffering from mental health issues.’
This will be the second time Packer is stepping down from the director post in his company. In 2015, he resigned as chairman of the board. However, conflicting statements from Crown Resorts leave a lot of confusion. On the one hand, the company mentioned ‘personal reasons’ in a filing to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). In a different statement to local media, they did not mention Packer’s reason for leaving.
Added to his company’s troubles, James Packer has had a few setbacks in the past few years. The billionaire casino magnate has been divorced twice and went through a public break up with Mariah Carey in 2016. Shortly afterwards, 19 Crown Resorts employees in Macau were arrested for promoting gambling. Since then, the company has suffered losses in share prices and serious slot tampering allegations.
While James Packer brushed off initial allegations brought forward by Andrew Wilkie. This was after four former employees of the casino came forward with their pokie tampering claims. However, Wilkie’s involvement made other lawmakers sceptical about the claims. Then, an investigation into the Crown Melbourne casino floor and gaming machines found evidence of tampering.
Unfortunately, Packer’s losing streak was far from over when shareholders decided to open a class action lawsuit against Crown Resorts. According to the lawsuit, Crown Resorts lost AU$993 million in value due to the Macau arrests. What’s more, James Packer has been named in a different court case involving the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu. Packer has been mentioned in the case after giving the Prime Minister expensive gifts. He has not been accused of wrongdoing yet.
For the moment, it seems that his withdrawal is a timely one for the company to do damage control. Keep visiting Pokies.com for updates on this story.