Crown Casino has gone to court to defend their decision to use approved and authorized poker machines in their casino. The attorneys representing Crown Casino have rejected all claims stating the company has been engaging in conduct both deceptive and misleading by using poker machines that were rigged. The allegation that deceptive conduct is being used by the manufacturers of poker machines was made by Maurice Blackburn. Although the case is being heard in federal court it is a civil case and the proceedings have reached the second day. The company has stated all the poker machines currently located on the floor of their casino in Melbourne have received approval by the regulators of the state.
In a statement made by Neil Young to Justice Debbie Mortimer he said all they were doing was making machines that had received authorization available to their customers. This is considered a landmark case and the proceedings started on Tuesday. The attorneys representing the former gambling addict Shonica Guy were present. They were there to prove players have been deceived and mislead by certain poker machines. She has filed actions against the Crown Casino and Aristocrat who manufacturers a poker machine called the Dolphin Treasure. This is the specific game her attorneys are focusing on and they have alleged the design elements used in the machine are a misrepresentation of the chances of winning.
The allegations claim the Dolphin Treasure uses sound, light, and image displays designed to make the player believe they have won when the gambler has actually lost money. The details provided on Tuesday additionally concern an oversized fifth reel. There are more symbols located on this reel than in any of the other four reels in the Dolphin Treasure game. The allegations claim this greatly reduces the chance the other symbols will line up correctly and significantly reduces the chances of the player winning.
Aristocrat manufacturers 1,080 poker machines with their brand. The Crown Casino in Melbourne currently has 38 of their Dolphin Treasure games located on the floor. The Crown Casino has stated all these machines have been approved and tested by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation. The company has denied all claims made on Tuesday that Aristocrat has a long and consistent involvement with Crown Casino and that they have kept Aristocrat current on how their machines were performing in the casino. Neil Young claims that the Crown Casino has made monthly reports to Aristocrat regarding the average turnover of their machines. He additionally stated this was the only data exchange and all the controls for image, sound, and light were not under the control of Crown Casino due to regulations. Mr. Young feels the authorized software emanations are being passed on by the Crown Casino and the only feature the casino has control of is the volume adjustment.
The Crown Casino believes the fact every feature has been approved and authorized gives them the right to make the machines available under Victorian law. Tim Costello is a campaigner for anti-gambling and made a short statement on Tuesday outside of the court. He said the problem was not with the individuals but with the poker machine itself. He stated the problem was with the machine because it had been designed to feed addiction and this was the purpose it was built to fill. He firmly believes the case will prove the machine is rigged, very deceptive, and misleading. Ms. Guy has struggled with addiction for 14 years and first began gambling at the age of 17.