Massachusetts AG presses for more casino regulations

“Allowing a state agency and a private developer to act in this manner erodes the public’s confidence in government,” he wrote in a Thursday letter. “Wynn has been allowed to proceed with its project seemingly unchecked, with little regard for the law or for impacted communities.”


BOSTON ‚ÄĒ Concerns that casinos could lead to greater criminal activity led Massachusetts’ top prosecutor to urge the state’s gambling overseers to come up with regulations combating money laundering, human trafficking and other illicit activities.

Attorney General Maura Healey suggests that the state Gaming Commission requires casinos to file timely reports to the state about suspicious activity and large cash transactions and to incorporate “zero tolerance” language in employee and vendor contracts about trafficking in people and drugs, among other measures.

“Such regulations should deter would-be money launderers, and identify those engaged in other criminal enterprises, such as drug traffickers, human traffickers, loan sharks and organized crime,” Healey wrote in the letter dated March 27.

State Gaming Commission Chairman Stephen Crosby said the panel will discuss the letter.

“Obviously, everyone is opposed to money laundering and human trafficking,” he said Thursday. “The question is, What’s the most effective way to make sure that these things are minimized? … We don’t want to blow it out of proportion, but you do want to think aggressively and creatively about how you make sure these things don’t become problematic in our state.”

The American Gaming Association, a casino industry trade group, called Healey’s concerns “completely misguided ” and indicative of a “deep and disappointing bias against the casino gaming industry.”

By PHILIP MARCELO Associated Press Posted Apr. 2, 2015 at 8:40 PM