An amazing turn of events occurred in the ongoing high-profile lawsuit for wrongful termination brought by Steven Jacobs, the former chief executive of the Sands Macau casino operation.
- Crime, Corruption, and Casinos – The Legacy Continues Today
- Corruption: What Happens in Macau Stays in Vegas
Top Secret Report Uncovered
A document was introduced into evidence by Steven Jacobs’ attorneys. The document came from Sands China, Ltd. It dates from Jun 2010. It is a confidential report (stamped across every page are the large words “Steve Jacob’s Copy”) prepared by a private investigator about CIA operations at the Macau casino owned by Sheldon Adelson.
A copy of the top-secret twenty-three page document, entitled “Findings of a Discreet Consulting Exercise in Macao, Hong Kong, and Beijing” was obtained by the investigative reporters from University of Berkeley, who published it online at The Guardian.
This document reads like a James Bond 007 movie script, in that it includes a detailed explanation of the suspicion that the casino was being used intentionally by the American CIA to entrap and then blackmail Chinese government officials who made huge (and illegal) losses of Chinese government money at the Sands Macau casino.
Why the Information Was Gathered
The report notes that the Sands Macao casino operation was considering making an additional substantial capital investment in Macao, yet there were concerns about the leaders running Macao, specifically Fernando Chui Sai On, the Chief executive of Macao’s Special Administrative Region and his Secretary for Economy and Finance, Francis Tam Pal Yuen.
How the Information Was Gathered
The private investigator identified highly placed sources in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Macao who were willing to give information as long as their identities remained anonymous. The cast of characters of both men and women, included:
- Three top-level Chinese government employees working in the Hong Kong & Macao Affairs Office in the Chinese capital of Beijing.
- At top official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Beijing.
- At top official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Macao.
- A mainland Chinese businessman who worked with Dr. Henry Fok Ying Tung. Dr Henry Fok was extremely wealthy businessman from Hong Kong who was also the Vice-Chairman for the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference for the People’s Republic of China for over twenty years before he died in 2006. Dr. Henry Fok was the most influential Hong Kong/Macao businessman due to his long-standing association with the Communist Party in mainland China.
- A reporter who works for the Xinhua News Agency, which is the government-approved official national news of the People’s Republic of China.
- An independent consultant, hired by the Chinese government, who reports on activities in Macao to Beijing.
- Two “think-tank” researchers who work for the government of China reporting on Hong Kong and Macao.
- An employee of a “sensitive” Chinese government department.
- An adviser to the Chief Executive of Macao.
Why the Chinese Government got Upset with Activities in Macao
The report states that an Internal Central Government Agency (the equivalent of the USA’s CIA) estimated that Chinese government officials from the mainland gambled the equivalent of US$2 billion away in Macao. This is corruption at the highest levels as this money was stolen from public funds.
Additionally, under Chinese law it is illegal to import more than the equivalent of US$50,000 per year by any person who comes from mainland China and wishes to gamble in Macao. Macao itself has no currency import or export restrictions, so Macao is (or was before the recent Chinese government crack-down) a main way for Chinese government officials to launder money obtained from illegal and/or corrupt practices and to get the funds out of mainland China for use in the rest of the world.
What the Chinese Government Thinks About the Sands
The Chinese Communist Party considers the Sands casino operation in Macao an undesirable expansion of American interests in the region. It goes even further than this. The Chinese government thinks the Sands Macao casino is a “front” for the U.S. government. This is due in part to Sheldon Adelson’s high-ranking position in the Republican Party and his direct connection to senior officials in the U.S. government.
The report notes that the Sands Macao casino made use of middlemen in an attempt to influence the members of the Chinese Central Communist Party and affect the efforts of the Chinese government to rein in the expansion of the Sands in Macao. Once such intermediary, who did not get his “pay” from the Sands turned against the casino and started actively campaigning with Beijing officials against the Sands casino’s interests.
Activities of the U.S. Government in Macao
During 2007, the American government requested permission to establish an American consulate in Macao. The Chinese government denied the request. It is well known that all governments use their consulate presence in other countries as a platform for espionage and to gain influence in those areas, as well as to recruit operatives for those activities.
After the September 11, 2006 terrorist event, the U.S. requested informational access to Macao banking, under the pretense of hunting for the movement of money by international terrorists. America also suggested to Beijing that the banking regulations of Macao be improved to restrict the flow of funds involved in money laundering. The Chinese government refused this request.
Chinese government officials were shocked and stunned by the details in the American report about the extent of money laundering activities in Macao by the North Korean government. These activities took place in Macao through Banco Delta. North Korea laundered money to get access to foreign currencies for international trade. After reviewing the U.S. government’s report, Chinese officials concluded that the only way the U.S. could have gained such detailed information is by using a U.S. casino in Macau as a front for their investigations into Macau banking activities. The Sands Macao casino with its recent history was the logical choice.
The Smoking Gun
The report states the Chinese government is aware that the Sands Macao casino allows CIA and FBI agents to operate from within its facilities. The Chinese government obtained evidence that federal agents lured and entrapped Chinese government officials who gambled in the casino, by using camera surveillance, in order to later blackmail them and force them to cooperate with the U.S. government’s agenda.
The report also states that the Chinese government thought the bold public statement made by Sheldon Adelson about the Sands casino operations in Macao, “having the power to change the course of development in the region,” was egotistical, offensive, over-reaching, and not consistent with Beijing’s long-term plans for the region.
What Happened Since the Report?
Since the time of this secret report, the mainland Chinese government instituted a major anti-corruption initiative, specifically targeting gambling operations in Macao. Visas for mainland Chinese to visit Macao have been severely restricted. Existing casinos revenues in Macao are off by up to 40% in some cases. New permits for casino expansions have stopped being approved.
The Lawsuit in Vegas
Stephen Jacobs’s lawsuit against the Sands for allegedly firing him when he refused to pay illegal bribes to Chinese officials is ongoing. This evidence introduces a strange new twist. If indeed, the illegal activities by the Sands in Macao, where under the guidance and the direction of the American CIA, then under U.S. law the crime that was committed will be eliminated by a simple Presidential executive order for the benefit of U.S. “National Security.” This is routinely done as legal “cover” for CIA black-ops activities in foreign countries.
Even though the report was commissioned and paid for by the Sands Macao casino, officials from Sands, including Adelson claim the report is only rumor and speculation. Of interest to note is that no criminal charges have been filed in connection with any supposed payments of bribes to Chinese government officials by the Sands. If an American citizen pays a bribe to any government official, anywhere in the world, this is an illegal act under U.S. law, unless, of course, if Sheldon Adelson was working for the CIA.
This case is fascinating because it gives a rare look, from an insider’s point of view, of the inner-workings of a major casino’s international operations and the activities of its mega-rich casino billionaire owner. It does appear that even a casino billionaire is no match for the Chinese government. The Central Government of China now presides over a massive economy that replaced America as the number one economy in the world.