Australia: Woman sues Crown Resorts for misleading information on slot machine design

The lawsuit comes at a time when Crown is grappling with a crisis in China after 18 company employees were detained for suspected "gambling crimes".

By: Reuters | Sydney | Published:October 26, 2016 8:04 am
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An Australian woman has sued casino operator Crown Resorts Ltd and slot machine maker Aristocrat Leisure Ltd, saying a slot machine had provided misleading information to customers about their chances of winning. Shonica Guy is not seeking damages but court-ordered declarations that the companies engaged in misleading conduct and an injunction banning them from continuing to provide the machine in its current configuration, the court filing said.

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The lawsuit comes at a time when Crown is grappling with a crisis in China after 18 company employees were detained for suspected “gambling crimes”.

The filing said a slot machine called Dolphin Treasure at Crown’s flagship casino in Melbourne suggested its five “reels” had the same number of characters but one column had substantially more, lowering the chances a gambler would win.

Representatives for Crown were not immediately available for comment.

A spokeswoman for Aristocrat declined comment. In September, Aristocrat said it was aware law firm Maurice Blackburn was preparing a lawsuit and that it expected to defend the action.

Maurice Blackburn said that while some gamblers in the U.S. have sued casinos for personal injury in relation to gambling losses, its case was the first to challenge the design of poker machines.

Shares in Crown and Aristocrat were both down 2 percent in early trade, while the broader market fell 1.4 percent.