Donald Trump spent more than 20 years in the Atlantic City casino business, employing tens of thousands of local residents and generating millions in tax revenue for the state. Dating right back to the early 1980s when he first entered the resort industry, Trump owned and operated three casinos on the Boardwalk in what was then considered the gambling mecca associated with East Coast.
In 1990, Donald Trump went all-in on Atlantic City, but today his business transactions are being criticized by some whom hold the billionaire partially responsible for the gambling destination’s dismal present financial state. (Image: Charles Rex Arbogast/AP)
Fast-forward to 2016, and the Republican frontrunner for the presidential general election has become facing backlash, maybe not only for the ultimate fate of his Atlantic City casinos, but in addition for just what role he perhaps played in the region’s current and ongoing downturn.
A former 2016 GOP candidate who has since endorsed Trump, defended the billionaire on Tuesday, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
‘He is a honorable person, and I do not think he’s ever been an office-holder in Atlantic City,’ Christie told reporters. ‘ I do not keep in mind Donald being mayor,’ he included, an apparent dig at current AC Mayor Don Guardian, for whom the Governor has no love destroyed.
Trump Taj Mahal Junk Bonds
Critique of Trump’s Atlantic City record mainly addresses exactly how he funded construction associated with Trump Taj Mahal. In 1987, Resorts Global was in the process of building the casino resort when its owner James Crosby died at the age of 58, due to problems of severe emphysema.
Crosby’s heirs didn’t feel acceptably skilled to understand project to completion, and eventually offered the stake that is controlling of to Trump for $79 million. He promised officials that are local the construction will be finished through standard bank loans, while the Casino Control Commission approved the project. However, the banks got cold legs, and Trump eventually raised capital through junk bonds with high rates of interest.
The interest on the mammoth project led to Trump defaulting on payments simply 15 months later on and filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Trump was over and over repeatedly pressured to guard his time in Atlantic City. During the first Republican debate in early August, he said his use of bankruptcy laws is something most businesspersons do at some point, and that sticking the bill to your junk bondholders was not a big deal.
‘These lenders are not infants,’ Trump said on August 6. ‘These are total killers. These are not the good, sweet little people.’
While Trump had the ‘good feeling’ (by his account that is own keep Atlantic City eight years back, the town itself has struggled ever since. Decreasing gaming revenues and property values has created a shortfall in fees being paid towards the city, but Christie believes spending that is outlandish the section of neighborhood government hasn’t been reigned in properly.
The governor in his second term has threatened to veto any Atlantic City relief bill which comes to his desk that doesn’t also hand over responsibility that is fiscal the state government.
Christie is at chances with State Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D), who wants to impose the PILOT (payment in place of taxes) system to allow struggling casinos to pay a fixed cost to the city, rather than taxes.
Some kind of action must be taken.
‘ If all you see are headlines that Atlantic City is out of money, people may draw a lot of incorrect conclusions from that,’ Christie explained. ‘It can impact tourism not just to Atlantic City but to all or any of south Jersey.’
Reno Sparks Nugget Fined $1 Million for Lax Money-Laundering Controls
The Sparks Nugget in northern Nevada was fined $1 million for ‘systematic and egregious’ violation of its anti-money laundering (AML) laws, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) stated this week.
Michonne Ascuaga, whom presided over the Reno Sparks Nugget once the violations took spot. She voluntarily resigned from the Nevada Gaming Commission in February over the scandal. (Image: Jeff Scheid/reviewjournal.com)
The violations occurred whilst the casino ended up being underneath the management of former Nevada Gaming Commissioner Michonne Ascuaga, who had been forced to resign from the commission board in February when news of research went general public.
The Ascuaga household went the Nugget for over 50 years, before it had been sold to personal investment group Wofhound Holdings in 2013. None of this research’s findings relate to the handling of the casino under its new owners.
Systematic Breakdown of Compliance
FinCEN, a branch of this Treasury Department, said that the Sparks Nugget willfully chose not to file Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) and Currency Transaction Reports (CTRs), an oversight which was in violation of the anti-money laundering provisions of this Bank Secrecy Act (BSA).
The casino also instructed its conformity officer not to communicate with the IRS’ Bank Secrecy Act auditors, while a management committee established to see whether to register SARs ‘never held a single meeting.’
The federal government agency said that the Nugget had been guilty of hundreds of accounting violations and compliance that is AML. Since the passage of the BSA in 1970, after which the amount of money Laundering Control Act in 1986, all US financial institutions have been obligated to register a CTR to FinCEN for just about any deal over $10,000, as well as to report any seemingly suspicious transactions.
BSA eliminated an individual’s straight to privacy that is financial declaring that the financial institution would not any longer be held accountable for declaring financial transactions to the authorities.
‘Sparks Nugget had a breakdown that is systemic its compliance program,’ said FinCEN Director Jennifer Shasky Calvery in a statement. ‘Despite the fact it hosted convicted embezzlers and had been repeatedly alerted to suspicious transactions by its[BSA that is own supervisor, Sparks saw no need to re-think its (AML) defenses.’
Ascuaga-Wolfhound Case Dismissed
Information of this FinCEN investigation first came to light in court documents in February, as part of judicial proceedings brought by the Ascuaga family members against the new owners. The Ascuagas stated they were owed $500,000 under the purchase and purchase agreement of the Nugget to Wolfhound, but that situation had been dismissed with a judge this week, coincidentally on the same day that FinCEN made its announcement.
Ascuaga, who was simply appointed to the Nevada Gaming Commission board by Governor Brian Sandoval ten months before her resignation, claimed she ‘did not purposely hold back once again information through the governor,’ whose office had been unaware of the investigation.
She was resigning, she said, ‘out of deep respect for the Nevada Gaming Commission and never to allow myself to be a distraction that is unnecessary the important regulatory oversight work it does.’
Philippine Casinos Targeted by Government Officials attempting to recover Stolen Money Related to New York Fed Heist
The Solaire is one of two Philippine casinos involved in a successful $81 million heist, and government officials are racing to find and clean up the money that is dirty to be in possession of several individuals and entities. (Image: forbes.com)
Two Philippine casinos and their parent companies are being targeted by government leaders trying to recoup the $81 million in stolen funds hackers swindled in February from the bank account held by Bangladesh at the brand new York Federal Reserve in Manhattan.
A total of $101 million was effectively withdrawn though $20 million was recovered by Bangladesh’s central bank.
Philippine’s Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) is expected to quickly file a case contrary to the Solaire Resort & Casino and Midas Hotel & Casino for their reported roles in introducing money that is dirty the nation.
As soon as the AMLC paperwork is completed, the Philippine government could seize assets associated with casinos should illegitimate money be found. The moms and dad companies regarding the resorts could contest the AMLC actions should they be able to prove that the laundered money had been presented by clean sources and junket operators who’ve long operated during the gambling enterprises.
The $81 million heist goes back to February that is early more than two months later detectives are still trying to piece together exactly how the theft took destination.
Casino junket operator Kim Wong, thought to be certainly one of the orchestrators of the heist, has adamantly denied those allegations. Instead, Wong claims he received notification from the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) on February 5 saying that the massive amount cash had been deposited into their accounts linked to his junket operations.
Wong testified before the Senate that is philippine that accounts received some $21.5 million from two international clients, whom in change laundered the money by gambling along by having a system of at the very least 19 people. Wong claims he don’t know the cash was dirty and thought the high rollers had been simply millionaire investors.
Wong returned the staying $5.46 million still in his possession to the AMLC a week ago. Investigators believe $63 million of this total $81 million ended up being channeled through the Solaire and Midas gambling enterprises via junket operators while an outstanding $17 million remains unaccounted.
AMLC officials suspect payment remittance processor Philrem Service Corp. might be in control of the $17 million, but the company denies claims that are such.
Philippine officials will also be urging the 2 gambling enterprises to return monies they truly are holding for the thieves that are suspected return any profits stemming from the heist.
Though Wong handed over a lot more than $5 million week that is last Bangladesh still hasn’t received a penny, or should we say taka.
‘The turnover takes a little time, but we have been using AMLC for expediting the procedure,’ Bangladesh Ambassador towards the Philippines John Gomes told Filipino news source Rappler this week.
Wong says he’ll hand over another $9.75 million nevertheless in his control in the next 15 to 30 claims. The Philippine junket operator is seemingly trying to clean his hands associated with dirty money, but free online casino slots shogun it remains to be seen if he was simply caught within the middle of a multimillion-dollar illegal procedure, or if he had been in cahoots with the criminal hackers.
Untangling the complicated crime that is international progressing gradually, and it will be a lot more months before the complete revelation into how the scheme operated is fully known.
Panama Papers China Connection Reflects Double Standard on Macau Anti-Corruption Measures
The Panama Papers continue to show that the seafood rots from the head down. China’s alleged anti-corruption drive has sent the revenues of Macau tumbling for 22 consecutive months, but now the most recent revelations could deliver Asia’s ruling Communist elite as a tailspin.
Panama Papers outs Chinese Communist leaders: President Xi Jinping’s brother-in-law had been named into the controversial documents. In all, eight top Chinese politicians have been implicated, causing blackout attempts by officials on Western news coverage. (Image: davidComurren.co.uk)
The scandal can be so threatening to its ‘do as I do’ stance that Beijing moved this week to block Western news outlets’ coverage of the leaked Mossack Fonseca Panama law firm database as I say, not.
In particular, any references to companies owned in offshore tax havens by the Chinese leaders are being censored.
Politburo Hides Wealth
The Panama Papers unveil that relatives of eight of Asia’s top politicians used overseas companies to hide wealth, including three of this seven-member Politburo Standing Committee, the country’s most powerful body.
The list includes President Xi’s brother-in-law, the daughter-in-law of propaganda chief Liu Yunshan, and also the son-in-law of vice-premier Zhang Gaoli.
Xi’s much-publicized anti-corruption crackdown was launched amid warnings that the theft of public funds by corrupt Communist Party officials, a nagging problem that had become endemic, could destroy the Party from the inside out.
Censorship in Overdrive
Most VIP high rollers from the mainland had been actually crooked Communist Party officials playing with stolen public monies. These VIPs once accounted for 60 per cent of Macau’s profits, and Beijing’s squeeze regarding the junket industry, which brought in these players en masse, hit the gaming region’s bottom line badly.
Now the Panama Papers threaten to undermine Xi’s anti-corruption crackdown, and the nation’s censors have gone into overdrive, blocking access to sites that might carry the damaging news.
‘we think there is a fear and a sensitiveness among Communist celebration leaders that this reveals the degree to that your political and elite that is economic so closely intertwined and so far above your average citizen in regards to wealth,’ Sarah Cook, a China specialist from the Freedom home advocacy group, told the UK’s Guardian this week.
‘This kind of blows a big hole in that work because it exposes how a top political leaders and their families are, at the least, super, super rich; even when this money was indeed obtained legally, which of course is a huge question mark aswell,’ she said.