An appeal to the Federal court wherein the appellant sought to appeal the prior judgement and to have four orders of the primary judge set aside. The respondents to these appeals were the owners and operators of casinos in Perth and Melbourne who utilise junket tour operators to provide opportunities for groups of players to attend the casino to play on special gambling terms and receive VIP treatment. The issue raised on appeal was the treatment of commissions, rebates and the total amount payable in relation to whether the special rules for gambling supplies apply to these amounts.
Jagot, Moshinsky, and Colvin JJ outlined that the presence of the agreement between the casino and the junket tour operators created a contractual and commercial relationship. Further discussion was given to the commissions and rebates payable by the junket tour operator and by the casino. These payments arose from commercial relationships and not particular acts of gambling and as such were not to be included in either the total amount waged nor the total monetary prizes. As such, the primary judge erred in concluding the amount payable at the end of a junket formed part of the total amount wagered or total monetary prizes and is therefore not covered by the rules governing gambling supplies.
Jagot, Moshinksy, and Colvin JJ allowed the Commissioner’s appeal and the substantive orders of the primary judge are set aside as the respondents have not shown that the relevant assessments are excessive. Orders that the appeals of the respondents against the appealable objection decisions were dismissed and costs to follow the event, both at first instance and on appeal.
Mark Robertson QC appeared for Burswood Nominees Limited, instructed by MinterEllison.
The judgement is published here.