The billionaire casino tycoon Steve Wynn just filed a lawsuit against hedge fund manager Jim Chanos,Reuters reports.
Wynn’s lawsuit accuses Chanos of slander “over an alleged statement that Wynn violated a US anti-bribery law.”
The suit alleges that on or about April 25, Chanos told guests at an invitation only event in Berkley, California that Wynn and his Las Vegas-based resorts had violated the federal Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
You can see video of the event here. Chanos starts speaking around 4:00 and again around 36:00.
In his lawsuit, Wynn also adds that gaming regulators in Nevada and Massachusetts, the SEC, and other government agencies have “thoroughly investigated” both him and his resorts. An no one found and reliable evidence of a FCPA violation.
Wynn is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
Jim Chanos is a Wall Street stalwart, and founded his short-only firm Kynikos (Greek for ‘cynic’) back in 1980s. One of his more famous moves was shorting Enron, several months before its bankruptcy.
He’s recently been arguing that China’s economy is overheated “due to its dependence on property development for growth.”
And on May 15, Chanos told CNBC that he would “no longer be long on the Macau casino.”
Macau happens to be the only place in China where casinos are legal, and revenues have been down in June (by 3.7%), July (by 3.6%), and August (a far worse 6%).