An Australian casino was fined $64,500 after a 12-year-old girl and two other teens were caught gambling in separate incidents last year.
The 12-year-old’s mother was filmed on security cameras sneaking her daughter into The Star casino in Sydney through the back door to avoid security, according to footage released Friday by the Liquor & Gaming New South Wales.
Once inside, the parents were filmed sitting with their daughter as she placed nearly two dozen bets on poker machines.
“It’s quite staggering that the young girl’s parents facilitated her entry in such a deceptive manner, let alone allowed their daughter to gamble,” NSW Independent Liquor & Authority Chair Philip Crawford said in a statement.
David Byrne, Liquor & Gaming NSW Director of Investigations and Intervention, said The Star’s staff should have safeguarded its exits and been able to easily spot such a young gambler inside.
“However, not only did The Star fail to manage the risk, once the child was on the gaming floor, there were a number of opportunities where staff should have noticed a very young person playing the poker machines — well before they actually did, which was when the family was leaving,” Byrne said in a statement.
Gamblers must be at least 18 to enter the casino and buy alcohol. But regulators also rebuked The Star for two other instances of underage high rollers.
In one case, a 17-year-old boy bought booze while playing 42 rounds of roulette and 22 hands of poker — and was only kicked out after three hours inside.
The Star also let a 16-year-old girl slip inside and buy drinks before she was caught while trying to enter a nightclub attached to the casino.
All three instances took place between March and July of last year, with The Star reporting the underage gambling itself to regulators, according to Liquor & Gaming New South Wales.
“Both children’s forays lasted long enough that they had interacted with several staff members by the time they were discovered,” Byrne said.