Gaming Commission investigating principals of proposed casino

by Associated Press

Published: July 30,2012

Tags: background, casino, commission, gambling, gaming, investigation, state government, state law

NATCHEZ — Background checks have begun for people involved in the Magnolia Bluffs Casino as the Mississippi Gaming Commission moves closer to granting final approval for an opening in December.

Commission deputy director Eddie Williams said the commission is conducting suitability investigations of casino owners, general managers, investors or significant shareholders.

Williams told The Natchez Democrat the suitability investigations involve exhaustive criminal, financial and business background checks and generally average about three months.

Williams said funding sources checked include the lending company that has a portion of the debt and the people who are putting money up themselves for the casino.

“Basically you’re determining where the money came from and making sure it comes from a legitimate source,”Williams said.

“This is standard with all casinos in preparation for licensing,” he said. “You’re making sure this is someone you want doing business in your state.”

Williams said the casino’s developers, Natchez Casino OpCo, formerly Natchez Gaming Enterprises, will have to appear at a gaming commission meeting prior to the casino’s Dec. 21 opening date to receive the license for the casino.

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