James Packer's "disgraceful" conduct in threatening a potential investor while a Crown Resorts' director should not preclude him from being approved as a close associate of a new Sydney casino, his lawyers say.
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Counsel assisting an inquiry argue that Mr Packer's conduct makes him unfit to be associated with the casino, and Crown is not suitable to run it.
In closing submissions on Friday, the barrister for Mr Packer's private company, Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH), suggested now that Mr Packer was being treated for bipolar disorder there was no risk he would engage in similar conduct.
The exact content of the 2015 emails between Mr Packer and the potential investor has been kept confidential, but the billionaire accepted in evidence he had made threats against the man and his conduct was "shameful" and "disgraceful".
Mr Packer resigned from the Crown board within three weeks of the email exchange, and said in evidence his resignation was due to his mental health struggles.
Rob Rankin, who was then chair of Crown, was copied into the emails but neither he nor Mr Packer informed Crown's board of their contents.
CPH's barrister, Noel Hutley SC, argued on Friday that they were not duty-bound to inform the board, if they believed there was no chance it would happen again.
The final part of the email chain suggested the participants recognised Mr Packer's behaviour was "aberrant", Mr Hutley said.
Counsel assisting have pointed to the emails when arguing that the regulator should revise its approval of Mr Packer as a close associate of the new casino.
But Mr Hutley argued the context around the emails meant they did not make Mr Packer unfit to be involved with the casino.
Mr Hutley denied that Mr Packer and nominees from CPH to Crown's board had a conflict of interest when they had access to internal Crown financial information at the same time they were negotiating a sale of CPH's shares to Melco Resorts.
The agreement under which Mr Packer and CPH obtained confidential information has now been terminated.
The inquiry has also heard evidence about Crown's partnerships with dodgy junket operators and the occurrence of money laundering in its casinos.
Crown's lawyers are expected to address the inquiry separately next week.
The inquiry will report back in February 2021.
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