Thai developer Nattachai Srirungsukpinij has been ordered to pay $5.5m to the casino but has so far failed to come up with the money. He is the largest of a group of 10 high rollers who bounced cheques but continued to gamble anyway.
The Australian Supreme Court has ordered the group of gamblers from Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia to repay the $23m in bounced cheques, but the casino believes it won’t get its money back.
The Star and other casinos always risk losing large amounts of cash because they agree to cash cheques written by their international high rollers immediately, compared to the three days to cash a cheque at a bank.
The legal action is largely a formality because the casino has very little chance of getting the money back. Orders from Australian courts are very difficult to enforce overseas and the gamblers at the centre of the case are unlikely to own property or other assets that could be seized to repay the debt.
The group was introduced to gambling in The Star’s VIP Sovereign Room through an Asian junket operator, SilkStar, which has since gone bust.
It is said they are considering action via a Casino Debt Collection specialist.