How Does Money Laundering Through Poker Machines Work?

Gambling’s lucrative nature attracts criminals intent on laundering illicitly-obtained funds, with casinos providing an ideal environment for crime syndicates looking to convert dirty cash to clean currency. Their anonymity provides criminals with numerous means of launder money without raising suspicion; such methods include using false identities, giving incorrect or vague identification information and creating multiple accounts that help conceal suspicious transactions.

Criminals frequently employ casinos as a money laundering mechanism by exchanging dirty cash for physical casino chips which they will then play with for short period before cashing out as “clean” money in form of checks. This practice, known as chip dumping, has been linked with illegal drug sales and weapons sales as well as firearm sales.

Another effective method for launder funds through online gambling sites is depositing large sums and colluding with other players in games like poker or blackjack to move it quickly without drawing too much notice from authorities – known as “gnoming”.

Other methods of laundering money through online casinos involve moving deposited money between accounts – known as layering – in order to distance it from its illegal origins, making it harder for investigators to trace. Layering can also involve moving it abroad to different currencies or purchasing assets such as houses or cars with it. Integration, the last stage in laundering schemes, occurs when funds enter legal economy as legitimate revenues.

These tactics are particularly dangerous for gambling operators who must comply with a variety of laws and regulations designed to prohibit them from engaging in money laundering activity. Therefore, having a robust internal control system which can identify suspicious activities quickly is paramount, while regularly training staff on this risk and making sure all procedures are observed as part of compliance training is also key to ensure operations run safely and legally.

NSW inquiry findings follow on the heels of similar investigations conducted in Victoria, Western Australia and Queensland that have revealed casino-owned by some of Australia’s largest operators serving as “safe havens” for money laundering by some criminal groups.

The inquiry revealed that criminals using poker machines to launder cash were motivated by gambling addiction. They would commit additional crimes such as drug supply and money-laundering in order to fund their addiction; consequently, this led them to commit additional offenses such as drug supply. Therefore, the inquiry recommended that state governments reduce credit limits of poker machines within clubs so as to prevent these instances of money-laundering from taking place.