Wynn Resorts security chief gone after spying admission
James Stern copped to covert tactics in hearing last week
THE FORMER FBI AGENT who headed up Wynn Resorts’ security operation no longer has a job at the international casino business four days after telling regulators he spied on employees and the ex-wife of the company’s founder.
The casino company, which plans to open an Everett resort in June, has been under scrutiny since a January 2018 Wall Street Journal story reported on multiple allegations of sexual harassment and worse against founder Steve Wynn, who resigned soon after the story was published.
As the Massachusetts Gaming Commission attempted to determine whether Wynn Resorts should keep its casino license, the company’s security chief, James Stern, acknowledged that he covertly surveilled Elaine Wynn and also spied on others, including one of the sources for the newspaper story.
According to a legal brief filed with the Gaming Commission on Monday, Matt Maddox, the CEO of Wynn Resorts, contacted Stern on Saturday and told him his services were no longer needed. The filing also said “no surveillance will be conducted of employees or third parties without the permission of the chief global compliance officer and the general counsel or other in-house counsel to whom she delegates responsibility.”
“Mr. Maddox’s initial response was based on his utter disbelief that Mr. Wynn engaged in such egregious conduct. Mr. Maddox’s immediate actions reflected that belief, but his subsequent actions are clear and convincing evidence that his suitability determination should not be disturbed,” the legal brief says. “To be clear, there is absolutely no evidence that Mr. Maddox was aware of any of the allegations of sexual misconduct at the time that they were made to other executives. No one has testified (or even suggested) that Mr. Maddox was aware of those allegations—not one email or other piece of evidence exists to show that he was advised of those allegations, and he has twice testified under oath that he was not aware of them. That other executives knew and failed to
advise Mr. Maddox is their failure, not his.”