Just as things start to slowly turn around for Resorts World Manila and get back to normal, there are reports that the authorities in the Philippines are preparing to file criminal charges against the management of Resorts World Manila based on the 02 June attack by a single gunman that resulted in the deaths of 37 patrons.
The lone gunman was an ex-employee of the casino who stormed the casino with a high powered weapon and opened fire in the casino but did not shoot anyone. He set fire to the casino tables presumably because he was upset that he had lost significant sums of money gambling and was in huge debt. The fire caused panic and was also the main cause of death as the people who lost their lives suffered from smoke inhalation. The gunman Jessie Javier Carlos would go on to take his own life in one of the hotel rooms.
Resorts World Manila Failed To Protect Patrons
A detailed investigation was launched into the attack and Resorts World Manila was forced to stop operations for a period of time. The investigation showed that there were a number of mistakes committed that could have prevented the attack from happening and escalating. The security personnel at Resorts World Manila were not armed to challenge the gunman and when they saw what was happening, they fled from their post. There were also allegations made that Resorts World Manila staff were not prepared and properly trained to deal with such situations and did not properly monitor CCTV footage that could have prevented the attack.
Travellers International, the company that operates the Resorts World Manila casino has refuted those allegations pointing out that thousands of patrons who were in the building managed to escape successfully due to the fact that they had proper systems in place and some staff members did help in taking the patrons to safety. However what cannot be denied is the fact that the security personnel were not fully equipped with high powered rifles of their own and were at a disadvantage in addressing the situation.
Criminal Lawsuits To Be Filed
In a statement, Oscar Albayalde, the police director for Metro Manila said “The Supervisory Office for Security and Investigation Agencies will finalise and submit their findings, which means they are ready to file charges of negligence resulting in multiple homicides.” He went on to say that the families of three victims have come together to file a criminal lawsuit against Travellers International and NC Lanting Security Specialist – the security firm that was in charge of security at Resorts World Manila.
The Manila Times, a local newspaper reported that Resorts World Manila had paid the families of the deceased close to $20,000 which is around 1 million pesos. The casino operator is also thought to have covered all the hospital and medical expenditure for all those who were injured in the attack. Resorts World Manila submitted a filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange on 04 July and stated that as of now settlement proposals that were filed were under consideration.
The company also stated that it could not comment on any potential lawsuits as it was yet to receive a final report from the Philippine National Police.
Resorts World Manila Suspension Lifted
Legislators were upset with what happened at the Resorts World Manila and wanted the casino to be shut down till a full investigation was completed. The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) ordered the casino to shut down operations on June 9 and listed a number of areas that Resorts World had to address to ensure that it was fully prepared to deal with similar situations.
The casino addressed all those issues and submitted a report to Pagcor who stated that after deliberations and careful scrutiny found the measures to be good enough for the ban to be revoked. Resorts World made a number of changes to its security and safety procedures and opened areas in the casino that were not impacted by the attack. The re-opening of the casino comes as good news to the 6,000 strong Resorts World Manila staff who were out of work for nearly 3 weeks.