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Crown Casino Executive Returns Home

Last Australian Crown Employee Released

Crown Resorts is concentrating more on the Australian market.

Australia's foreign minister, Julie Bishop, has confirmed that Crown Casino executive, Jason O'Connor has been released from prison.

O'Connor was sentenced to 10 months in a Shanghai prison after being charged with gambling-related offences by Chinese authorities.

A number Crown Resorts employees (two of who no longer work for the company) were convicted in China for various offences related to gambling.

In China, it is illegal to market casinos or organize gambling trips that involve more than ten people. Macao is an exception to this rule.

All those arrested faced charges of up to three years in prison. O'Connor was the last of the three Australian employees to be released. He left the prison on Saturday with four other Crown staff members, including Alfred Gomez, a Malaysian national.

Chinese Gambling Clampdown

Chinese authorities are on a mission to clamp down on casino operators who market their services to mainland Chinese high rollers.

Two of Crown's Australian casinos saw Chinese high rollers gamble $875 million during 2016.

A report shows that O'Connor broke marketing rules in China after he flew there in 2016.

After he was arrested, O'Connor and other Crown staffers pleaded guilty to promoting gambling on China's mainland. The company was also forced to pay $1.7 million in penalties for each of its jailed staff members.

Following the arrests, Crown Resorts started withdrawing from the Chinese market and has turned more of its focus on the local Australian casino market..

Crown Welcomes Freed Staff

The executive chairman of Crown, John Alexander said about the release of O'Connor and other employees: "We are very pleased that our employees are being reunited with their families."

"Crown is deeply appreciative of the support provided by our legal counsel over the last few months and thanks the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Australian government for their professionalism and assistance."