Resorts World Las Vegas Prez Scott Sibella Ousted
In a cataclysmic shakeup, Scott Sibella has been fired as president and COO of Resorts World, after allegedly violating the company’s policies, a statement from the Las Vegas Strip casino resort announced on Friday, Sept. 15.
Peter LaVoie, most recently senior VP and chief financial officer of Resorts World, has taken the helm as company CEO. It is not known whether this is a temporary or permanent placement for him.
The announcement comes six weeks after the Nevada Current broke the news that federal agents were investigating an illegal sports betting ring to which current and former Las Vegas resort employees are alleged to have provided confidential customer data and to have used casino resorts to pay off their personal gambling debts.
An unnamed Nevada state employee told the Current that agents were investigating Sibella’s actions in connection to the ring while he was president and COO of the MGM Grand from 2010 to 2019.
The ring was headed by a former minor league baseball player named Wayne Nix. In April 2022, Nix pleaded guilty to running it and to failing to report $1.4 million in earnings from it in 2017 and 2018. He agreed to pay back taxes and interest of $1.25 million and to forfeit $1.3 million seized from bank account. Nix also faces up to eight years in prison.
According to court filings, Nix’s ring operated for almost two decades, employing former pro athletes as bookies, and boasted clients including active NFL and MLB players.
That Which is Never Announced
“Resorts World Las Vegas today announced that president and COO Scott Sibella has left the company, effective immediately,” Resorts World’s statement to the media announced. “This action comes after the company was recently made aware that Mr. Sibella violated company policies and the terms of his employment.”
Statements of terminations are almost never issued in the hospitality business, where press releases typically accompany only new hirings, promotions, and other news that stockholders are likely to regard as positive for the company.
Second to Final Straw
In a separate investigation earlier this year, Sibella was cleared of wrongdoing by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, which investigated whether a convicted illegal bookmaker held an ownership position in the Resorts World eatery Tacos El Cabron.
Nevada gaming laws prevent casinos from conducting any business with convicted illegal gamblers.
The board called the allegations unsubstantiated. But the Genting Group, the Malaysian-based conglomerate that owns Resorts World, could not have been thrilled that they were levied in the first place.
Genting hired Sibella as Resorts World president in 2019. Well-regarded in the industry, he helped steer the unfinished, $4.3 billion project to completion two years later.
Before he presided over the MGM Grand, Sibella also served as president of The Mirage. Prior to that, he was an executive at Treasure Island, Tropicana, and the Golden Nugget.