More heads roll in wake of damning Crown report

Helen Coonan will lead the company after Ken Barton stepped down.

Ken Barton has stepped down as CEO and managing director of Crown Resorts following last week’s damning report from NSW into the company’s operations.

“I am absolutely certain the business is now on the right path as it works to restore confidence in its operations,” he said in a statement.

Helen Coonan will lead the company as executive chairman while the board searches for a new CEO.

Barton’s resignation comes after a scathing assessment from Commissioner Bergin, who helmed the inquiry, describing Barton as “no match for what is needed at the helm of a casino licensee”.

“His problems will not be cured by the appointment of people expert in the field who report to him”, she stated.

Barton’s departure follows the resignation of Crown directors, Andrew Demetriou, Michael Johnston and Guy Jalland.

The fallout has also impacted those outside Crown, with WA chief casino officer Michael Connolly stood aside after questions were raised about his friendships with Crown Perth’s legal and compliance team.

Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries Director General Duncan Ord said the move was necessary to stem any “perception of a conflict of interest”.