Crown Resorts is dealing with another lawsuit, and this time it is from Ahmed Hasna, a gambling addict. Ahmed, with the help of James Packer, is suing Crown for about $3.3million. The incident is very similar to a story recently released in the UK whereby casinos were criticised for letting a problem gambler wager £1.3 Million.
News regarding the lawsuit was shared by Stephen Maybe, a Melbourne local government counsellor and award-winning journalist, on August 10th via Twitter. He stated that the lawsuit had the possibility of ending as a class-action case.
Crown Resorts Staff Were Not Responsible
In his $3.3million against Crown Resorts, Hasna stated that he experienced some losses at the property. This came after members of staff disclosed that they handled him in a predatory and irresponsible manner, even though he was a gambling addict.
The Sydney Morning Herald attained a statement from Hasna, which was dispatched to the Federal Court, where he accused the resort of going against its code of conduct by allowing him to gamble. In addition, the resort encouraged him to continue gambling by offering him tickets, free vacations, and opportunities to wager on credit.
Hasna elaborated on his gambling problem and revealed that he frequently gambled at the resort’s Southbank property in Melbourne between 1993 and 2019. He added that at some point, he made an average bet of almost $14,000. Hasna further claims that he once gambled for 26 hours without taking a break and believes the casino resort should have known about his gambling problem. Whether Hasana also gambles at Australian online gambling sites too is not known, but it is highly likely as most problem gamblers gamble in both land-based and online establishments.
The Victoria Royal Commission Looks into The Case
The Herald stated that the Victoria Royal Commission noted Hasna’s gambling Condition and that they were looking into if Crown Resorts could continue to hold a license in June 2021. The interesting part about this case is that Hasna reportedly informed the Crown Resorts employees that he had financial issues and was thinking of banning himself. However, the commission found out that even though he lost $77,305 in chips, he was still invited to the Mahogany hall to gamble on credit. This hall is only offered to VIP players to enjoy table games like Poker, Blackjack, etc. Hasna received this invitation after making it clear that he had a gambling problem and wanted to ban himself.
The Australian Financial Review further noted that:
His claim was the first individual one that came to the Victorian commission into Crown Resorts.
Even more fascinating in this case is the fact that there were many active investor class actions in the behavior displayed by Crown during the stated time frame. The Crown Melbourne’s Head of VIP customer service, Peter Lawrence, submitted a report to the Victorian Commission, stating the predatory and irresponsible behavior that the casino employees had towards Hasna.
Crown Melbourne was Unbothered even after Intervention from Hasna’s Mum
Also included in Hasna’s statement are details of how Crown Melbourne failed to stop his actions, even after his mother’s intervention at some point.
According to Hasna:
his mother pleaded twice with the employees at the resort to make him stop and ensure he did gamble away his facility money. Hasna also showed aggression towards staff as he was losing his money.
The claims further added that to worsen the situation, Crown Melbourne permanently banned Hasna way after the events in December 2020. This was even though numerous recommendations had been placed by security as a result of his aggressive behavior. The Herald noted that a spokeswoman from Crown stated that the company aims to defend the claim, while Hasna’s lawyer chose not to leave any comment on the matter.