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Andrew: No casino crime expected

rhondathompson, [email protected]

Andrew: No casino crime expected

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CASTRIES, St Lucia – The Executive Vice President of the St Lucia Hotel and Tourism Association (SLHTA), McHale Andrew, has dismissed suggestions that the opening of the island’s first casino could encourage criminal activities in St Lucia.
The Stephenson King administration has given its approval to Treasure Bay Casino of the United States to operate the facility at the newly opened EC$120 million (US$44.4 million) Baywalk Mall in Rodney Bay Village.
However, there have been expressions of concern from faith-based organisations that gaming will attract persons linked to the underworld.
But Andrew said he was confident that this would not be the situation.
“I can tell you that based on the experience of other countries in the Caribbean, this whole thing about casinos, morality and generating crime is unfounded, simply because unlike other forms of gambling that have been rampant for decades, casino gambling takes place in a controlled environment.”
He said one of the key drivers for the success of the 600-room Marriott Hotel in St Kitts was a casino, adding “I know for a fact that there has never been any association between the establishment of the Marriott and crime”.
He further noted that apart from being a special attraction, casinos also assist in diversifying the tourism sector. (CMC)