Mouldy millions have made a Korean high roller who frequented an Australian casino look highly suspicious.
The 43-year-old Korean, Byongsam Song, is suspected of laundering money, as $3.6 million in cash was handed to casino staff in the VIP high roller section.
Since the cash was covered in mould, staff concluded it had not been stored in a bank and tipped the police off.
According to Australian Federal Police, the cash has been vacuum sealed and the cashier staff noted the rubber bands holding the $10,000 bundles of money together were partially disintegrated.
The staff noted the unusual attributes after he requested canvas bags to carry the millions to the casino cage. Later they noted seeing the cash in “clear sealed packaging” in cardboard boxes in his room.
The police charged Mr Song with “dealing with property reasonably suspected to be the proceeds of crime,” after the money was deposited at the Australian casino, Star City on the Gold Coast on May 2 and 3.
Mr Song is expected to plead not guilty to the charge.
The Brisbane Supreme Court agreed to release Mr Song on $200,000 bail – put up by his boss’s wife – after a character reference from a South Korean military officer was submitted.
Mr Song reportedly told the AFP he was delivered the cash in suitcases by a man he had not met before, known as Nicholas Losurdo. He also said he was told the money was his to gamble with and he would not be liable for any losses.
But the AFP revealed Mr Song also said he brought the money over with him from South Korea and it belonged to his friends.
Mr Song also told the police it was his boss, Gold Coast millionaire, Wan Il Choi, who had organised the trip to the casino and paid for everything. He added he ran a cosmetics company for Mr Choi, who police are investigating too.
While no charges have been made against Mr Choi, $500,000 in cash which was deposited into his VIP casino account on May 1 was allegedly also “smelly, musty, with rubber bands that were disintegrating” and, were in bundles of $10,000.
As the police prepare their case, Mr Song will live with Mr Choi and his wife at their $1 million Gold Coast home.
Money laundering is not new in the casino industry, with the Star dealing with many suspicious claims over the past few years in regards to where the money has originated from. Just last year a Singaporean national was jailed for six months after $600,000 was collected from one of the Sydney casino’s safety deposit box. The offender tried to convince authorities the money had come from his aunt’s brothel in Newcastle, NSW, but the court did not buy his story.
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